Member of Parliament for Klottey Korle Constituency, Hon. Dr. Zanetor Agyeman Rawlings, has urged young agricultural students and beginner agripreneurs participating in this year’s AG-STUD Bootcamp to prioritize collaborations, as a way of supporting and learning from one another.
She said its important for young agriprenures to share ideas and explore opportunities together because it helps them to ground their ideas and do more.
“Sometimes collaboration is better than competition” she stressed, “because it strengthens and gives you the robustness to face whatever shocks may present itself in the market,”
Hon. Zanetor Agyeman Rawlings, who is also the Patron for AG-STUD, was speaking on Monday, April 19, on the first day of the 4th Agricultural Students’ Career Guidance Mentorship Dialogue and Bootcamp (AG-STUD-AFRICA), annually organized by Agrihouse Foundation, to bring together agricultural students, beginner agribusinesses and start-ups to appreciate the pivotal role they are expected to play, in building resilience and preparedness towards sustaining the food security of the nation through creative and innovative agriculture.
This year, the Bootcamp is on the theme, “We have Enabled and Established the Agri-youth! Time to Scale-Up them-Up to Feed Ghana.”
Touching on more ways to empower and upscale the young, she said education is one key way, emphasizing that, when students are given opportunity to study agriculture at an early age, it gives them a practical understanding of the whole agric value chain, and helps students develop a love for the sector.
She further noted that, a section of Ghana’s arable land must be reserved for agricultural purposes, “recently, in parliament, this issue was addressed” she revealed, “As to whether it will translate into what it has to do, regards to protecting arable land and certain crops remains to be seen,” she noted.
Touching on food security, she said there’s a need to diversify and apply science, both in plant and animal agriculture, because science prevents wastage, and ensures that resources are used judiciously for but we abundant harvest.
About AG-STUD AFRICA
The bootcamp employs Military disciplinary drills, Mentorship sessions, coaching, educational tours, dialogues, role play, strategic competence-based capacity building and leadership sessions, to contribute to the mindset change, whiles attracting campers to appreciate the entire value chain cycle, the roles and career path, they can create and ultimately, assisting them to develop their business ideas and ensuring implementation of their business.
AG-STUD AFRICA, has introduced participating students and groups to several opportunities within the agricultural value chain; the platform continues to educate them with relevant knowledge and skills on how to harness such opportunities. As a result, over 600 students from 30 different schools who have participated in previous editions of AG-STUD have been have taught to be self-reliant, and supported with start-up capital to help them start their own agri-businesses.
Indirectly, the bootcamp has benefitted over 1000 agri-business students and beginner agribusinesses enabling them to develop strong and bankable business plans. About 43 successful businesses are presently, being run by students who have participated in AG-STUD.
This year the list of supporting organizations includes, Agriculture Development Bank, OCP, MyBarnes, Holland Akokor, CDF Canada, ADDFRA, Sonal Global. 4R Solutions, B-diet, Kovi and Nanaam Ventures.