Three Big Ideas Win Africa Rural Connect's Young Farmers Idea Contest!
Recently, Africa Rural Connect held a contest called the Young Farmers Idea Contest. This contest encouraged African diaspora and volunteers to share their ideas for new ways to engage youths in sub-Saharan Africa under 18 years of age, whether through educational projects, community-building initiatives, social programs, or other methods centered around agriculture and farming.
Between April 15 and May 31, 2012, numerous ideas were submitted to Africa Rural Connect, remixed, and endorsed. The top 10 endorsed ideas appeared on the contest leaderboard and were then sent to contest judges who evaluated and chose their top three ideas. After much voting and deliberation, Africa Rural Connect is excited to announce the three winners of the Young Farmers Idea Contest!
In first place, with her idea about connecting doctors and farmers through mobile phones, is Rachel Zedeck's idea "KUZA Doctor - A Farmer's Mobile Toolkit from Farm to Fork." This idea, according to Rachel, will "support farmers using the most basic mobile phones with critical knowledge to increase their rates of production and subsequent incomes while learning the value of local biodiversity and conservation farming." The KUZA Doctor toolset will even release a smart phone option in the near future! Rachel and the rest of the Backpack Farm team will receive $5,000 in prize money to support their KUZA Doctor toolset. Congratulations Rachel and the entire Backpack Farm team!
Following Rachel's first place idea is James Makini's "One Hen Campaign," an idea that has the goal of empowering rural Kenyan women and youth economically through a micro-loan of a local hen and cage. The One Hen Campaign will, specifically, enable James and his staff to teach the women and youth about poultry management, entrepreneurship, agribusiness, financial management, adaptation to climate change, value chain and addition, and other related issues. When asked what James and the One Hen team will do with their $2,500 prize, James replied, "We will use it as a revolving fund where we will buy and rear more indigenous hens which we will in turn lend to youths and women to multiply further. We will also use part of the fund to publicize our work supported by Africa Rural Connect in the social media." Keep up the great work, James!
Finally, the Young Farmers Idea Contest's third place winner is Benson Mariki for his "Terrat Primary School Lunch Program in Partnership with Terrat Ward, Arusha Region" idea. Benson's idea, which is implemented through the Arusha, Tanzania-based nonprofit The Green Living Planet, seeks to resolve the problem of children going hungry while at school by growing African-style keyhole gardens. By starting these gardens, Tanzanian schools will have a sustainable school lunch program for all of their students. Benson not only plans to use his $1,000 prize towards improving the Terrat Primary School Lunch Program, but to also "add another new school we have started a project with which is called Baraa Primary School" to his lunch program. Best of luck with both lunch programs, Benson!
Congratulations to all of our contest winners, finalists, and participants! Without your vote and idea contributions, Africa Rural Connect's Young Farmers Idea Contest would not have been possible.
The contest may be over, but discussing your ideas never is! Keep posting your ideas and remixes on the Africa Rural Connect platform. After all, your idea just might inspire Africa Rural Connect's next contest!
Win a prize for your idea!
Win a prize for your idea!
Collaborate with others to turn your best idea into a practical, creative, sustainable plan with real world impact. Don’t Delay!