On October the 7th 2014, YPARD Egypt in collaboration with the Foundation of Sinai Youth for Development and Human Rights organized a workshop at the headquarters of the Foundation in Al-Arish city, North Sinai, Egypt. The meeting had the participation of a total of 26 young people (14 women and 12 men) from North and South Sinai provinces.
The attendees consisted of active youth affiliated with a wide range of agriculture and rural development related organizations including: university and research institutions; representatives of government departments of agriculture, aquaculture, rural development and extension services in the provinces; NGOs working in the area of youth and agricultural development; as well as young agri-food entrepreneurs.
Youth involvement in Ag: Crucial for socio-political stability in Egypt
The meeting started with a presentation by Assem Abu Hatab, a researcher at the Suez Canal University and YPARD member on the major challenges facing the agricultural sector in Egypt and the potential role that youth could play to address them. Moreover, the presenter highlighted the likely impacts of the growing lack of work opportunities for young people especially in rural areas and how this has trended up after the revolution as a result of the economic downturn.
The exposition was summed up by emphasizing the productive involvement of the Egyptian youth in agricultural development as crucial not only for productivity growth, food security and competitiveness of the sector, but also for the socio-political stability in the country.
YPARD or an example of youth awareness towards Ag issues
In the second part of the workshop, a presentation was given by Dr. Sameh Atta, the Chair of the Foundation of Sinai Youth for Development and Human Rights on the role of youth NGOs in agricultural development in Egypt. Likewise, the presenter introduced YPARD as an example of youth awareness towards agricultural issues to the audience and highlighted the opportunities that YPARD provides to young professionals in the field of agriculture and the best possible ways to utilize YPARD for youth-led agricultural development in Egypt.
After a short coffee break, an open discussion was held where the participants shared their views and opinions on how to promote youth participation in agricultural and rural development in Egypt. A major part of the discussion was devoted to answer participants’ questions and inquiries on YPARD membership and its activities and how to utilize this platform in Egypt.
Picture credit: Assem Abu Hatab