Efforts to make agriculture attractive and create more jobs for the youth under the sector have received a boost with the launch of the Legon chapter of the Agricultural Students Career Guidance and Mentorship Dialogue (AG-STUD) Africa club.
It was on the theme “Growing Futures: Establishing the Agri-Youth.”
AG-STUD Africa, an initiative of Agrihouse Foundation, which started last year is aimed at helping agric students, start-up agribusinesses with start-up expertise and also expose them to the dynamics of the agribusiness market through education and leadership programmes, which are essential to the success and growth of the agriculture sector.
Speaking at the official launch of the Legon Chapter Club of AG-STUD Africa, the Team Lead of Agrihouse Foundation, a non-governmental agricultural organisation, Alberta Nana Akyaa Akosa explained that the formation of the club was to attract the youth to the agricultural sector while they were in school.
She explained the need for the formation of the AG-STUD Africa clubs in tertiary institutions came out after the AG-STUD Africa agri-business capacity building boot camp held in February last year.
Ms Akosa said the boot camp attracted more than 320 students from 20 tertiary institutions such as Kwame Nkrumah University of Science and Technology, University of Ghana, Asuansi Farm Institute, Kwadaso Agricultural College, Damongo Agricultural College and Central University College and had speakers such as former President of Ghana, Flt Lt Jerry John Rawlings and the MP for Korle Klottey, Dr Zenator Rawlings.
She said the programme sought to develop youth and students’ leadership, discuss the challenges and opportunities in the corporate world of agribusiness, the value chain system, and farm management skills.
Ms Akosa disclosed that efforts were being made to create the AG-STUD clubs in all the tertiary institutions across the country.
On the Legon AG-STUD Africa club, the Team Lead of Agrihouse Foundation said the club would be assisted with seed capital and farm inputs worth GH10, 000 to start their business, which would involve the cultivation of lettuce and cabbage for sale for the Legon community.
She said the association would operate as a business and has a managing director, general manager, accountant and sales and marketing officer.
The Dean of School of Agriculture of the University of Ghana, Professor Daniel B. Sarpong in remarks made on his behalf by the Assistant Registrar of the School, Kofi Yeboah commended Agrihouse Foundation for the initiative.
He opined that the university needed such programmes to expose the students to business opportunities in the agribusiness and agriculture sector to help them create businesses while in school and after school.
The Managing Director of the Legon AG-STUD Club, Obed Asamoah expressed gratitude to Agrihouse Foundation for the support and the Legon authorities for providing land for the club to carry out its farm business.
He pledged that the club would make good use of the funds and input given it to generate for returns.
By Kingsley Asare