DuPont and National 4-H Council have created a partnership to strengthen youth development in rural African communities. DuPont’s commitment of up to $2 million over the next two years will allow the global 4-H network to help African youth create sustainable livelihoods and improve household and national food security for people across the continent.
Following a successful pilot in Tanzania that was completed this spring, the global 4-H network now will launch a year-round Leadership Institute for 4-H leaders and volunteers in Ethiopia, Ghana, Kenya, South Africa and Tanzania, starting in January 2012. The global 4-H network will train African-based 4-H leaders and mentors about agricultural innovation and farming practices. They also will provide culturally relevant, research-based tools, expertise and resources that can be used at the local level.
Additionally, 4-H will expand its Enterprise Gardens program for school-based youth, their families and their communities to inspire young people to explore agriculture and see their role in feeding the world.
“After walking the fields with many African farmers, I understand the urgent need to engage African youth in agriculture, where pressures of food insecurity are greatest. The farmer who will feed the world over the coming decades is a young person today. Empowering them to do so is a great responsibility for all of us,” says DuPont Executive Vice President James C. Borel, who serves as current chair of the National 4-H Council Board of Trustees. “DuPont and 4-H share a belief that youth development is a key sustainability initiative to address global food security. What’s more, our African-based businesses also are committed to imparting agricultural training to developing farmers, making this partnership a natural fit on many levels.”
“Youth development is the world’s best long-term solution to ensure food security and global economic stability,” says Donald T. Floyd Jr., president and chief executive officer of National 4-H Council. “4-H’s 100-year history in agricultural innovation and youth skill-building combined with an existing infrastructure in more than 70 nations, has uniquely positioned our organization to equip millions of young people in developing nations with the skills needed to build a truly sustainable future.”
Sharing a similar global footprint, 4-H and DuPont plan to access local leadership to extend the program. 4-H programs have taken root in more than 70 countries, and DuPont has strong relationships with farming communities in more than 90 countries through its agriculture-based businesses.
Susan Naburi, chief executive officer of Tanzania 4-H, says, “Our mission is to build a world in which youth can learn, grow and work together to become economically independent and responsible adults. We are excited and look forward to the increasing positive impact of the global 4-H network.”
“No single company or organization can solve global food security alone. DuPont is committed to being a part of the solution and we hope others will support programs like the global 4-H network to engage tomorrow’s agriculture leaders today,” Borel adds.
4-H is one of the world’s largest youth development organizations, found in more than 70 countries in North America, South America, Central America, Europe, Asia and Africa. In the United States, 4-H is a community of 6 million young people learning leadership, citizenship and life skills. National 4-H Council is the private sector, nonprofit partner of 4-H National Headquarters located at the National Institute for Food and Agriculture (NIFA) within USDA. More information about 4-H is available here. www.4-H.org