My name is Leonard Avonsige and I am from the Upper East region of Ghana, but currently reside in Tamale the Northern Region. I am a graduate of the Catholic University College of Ghana with a BSc in computer science. I am 33 years of age and work with a non-profit organisation called TechSupport Ghana, an ICT non-profit organization that empowers youth in ICT and entrepreneurship.
During my senior high school days I took Agriculture Science as a course. My ambition as an individual has always been to incorporate ICT into agriculture so that it will affect the entire nation of Ghana.
As a young man growing up it has always been my ambition to start an agricultural business that will provide jobs for the rural folk but most importantly to make it a point of encouragement for the educated youth. Working with an organization that deals with youth I see it as an opportunity to use that medium as a starting point to educate youth about the importance and benefits of agriculture in our modern era.
The title of my project is “Provision of jobs for the rural people and encouragement of educated youth through agriculture”. The main objective of the project is, first of all, to start large-scale crop farming at a particular rural location and then later on start animal and bird farming.
The crop farming is to provide a stepping stone in order to acquire more land for the animal and bird farming. The crops that will be cultivated include maize, groundnut and soya beans while the animal and bird farming will include sheep, pigs, goat, exotic birds, guinea fowls etc.
In 2015, I negotiated with some members of a rural community called Yulugu in Tamale. The members who I negotiated with gave me a number of hectors to start my crop production. This year I have spoken with more individuals of the Yulugu community and they are willing to give me more land so that I can continue with my crop production business.
The Yulugu community members have made me understand that they have more land available but the funds needed for production are unavailable. They are willing to provide more land for people who have the required funds for agriculture production because it will serve as a job opportunity for the youth of the community, thereby preventing economic migration from the rural areas to urban areas in search of jobs.
In Ghana one major problem faced by the rural people is the unavailability of jobs. Most people in Ghana prefer to invest all resources in the cities where they believe huge returns will be achieved. This Issue of unemployment compels for the migration of the rural people from rural areas to the towns and cities where better jobs can be gotten.
Research in Ghana shows that a high number of rural people are found in the towns and cities due to the issue of unemployment. According to this research on rural-urban migration in Ghana, women make up a greater number of the rural people who migrate to the towns and cities to seek jobs. When these rural people cannot find the jobs they seek they indulge in social vices such as prostitution, armed robbery and drug abuse, among others.
Also, most educated youth in Ghana do not want to involve themselves in agriculture because they think and believe agriculture or farming is for the uneducated. This thought has made most of the educated youth not involve themselves in agriculture and for that matter move about without jobs because jobs in the formal sector are very limited.
With the organisation I work for I engage youth almost every time I meet them. I will use this opportunity to encourage and educate the youth to get into agriculture and possibly introduce them into how to start their own farming business.
The success of every business is very important. To achieve success in whatever business you are doing, the most important thing to consider is planning and most importantly looking at the environment in which you are doing the business, i.e. how will it benefit you and the people within the community.
In the planning process, what I will first consider is getting the necessary tools such as land, seeds and human resources, among others. When all this is achieved I will educate more youth on how to start their own agriculture business so that they can become Agriprenuers.
As mentioned above, I was able to acquire some land in the community in which I started my project and the community is willing to give me more land if only I have the necessary input resources to cultivate the land. I started this project with my own funds and I am hoping that your organization will provide me with the needed funds or resources to scale up my agricultural business in other communities.
I am able to measure the success of my agricultural business based on the amount of funds I used in the cultivation of the land and the amount of produce I acquired after harvesting and processing for consumption.
Also, I determine the success of the venture based on the number of community members who benefited from my agricultural business. I usually observe the number of people who worked and were paid for services rendered and those who benefited directly from the produce of the farm.
Blogpost and picture submitted by Leonard Avonsige (Tamale, Ghana) – azosiyine[at]gmail.com
The content, structure and grammar is at the discretion of the author only.
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