• The organisation enrolled youth from Nyando, Seme, Kisumu Central, Nyakach, Kisumu East, Muhoroni and Kisumu West subcounties.
• The project will increase income for the youth as they acquire knowledge and skills in poultry farming.
More than 1,000 youths in Kisumu county have been recruited for agribusiness and environmental conservation projects, for self reliance.
The initiative by Green World Organisation targets to empower youths through enhancing their knowledge, skills and income generation.
The organisation, which advocates for food security and environment conservation enrolled youth from Nyando, Seme, Kisumu Central, Nyakach, Kisumu East, Muhoroni and Kisumu West subcounties.
The project will increase income for the youth as they acquire knowledge and skills in poultry farming, which they implement in various subcounties.
Beneficiaries will also grow sorghum and trees for income generation.
The agribusiness programmes targeting youths and inmates will make them self reliant. The produce will be sold with proceeds given to the youths.
The organisation's secretary general Isaac Otieno said those enrolled under phase one of the project will plant trees in schools and communities.
Green world operates in 10 counties of Kisumu, Homa Bay, Narok, Kisii, Nyamira, Siaya, Kakamega, Vihiga, Migori and Busia.
Otieno said they have identified 200 schools in every county, where each will be given 1,000 trees for planting.
At community level, members of the organisation will be given 100 trees to plant in their homes.
The organisation targets to recruit 10,000 youths for the programme in each of the counties.
The project targets 100 groups translating to 1,500 youths in phase one.
In Phase two and three, 200 groups of 3,000 and 300 groups of 4,500 youths will be recruited respectively.
“We expect to recruit 10,000 youths in each of the counties that we operate in by the end of the next year to be beneficiaries,” Otieno said.
He spoke during unveiling youths in an agribusiness project at Kandaria Primary School in Nyando subcounty.
“We empower youths because there is unemployment. The objective is to create green collar jobs. We want them to understand that one does not only need to be employed in an office to earn a living,” Otieno said.
Those enrolled for the project are also trained at the Kenya Forestry Research Institute on how to establish the tree nurseries.
Apart from poultry farming, sorghum and tree planting, the organisation will also train the youth on sunflower farming to be introduced in Nyanza region.
Otieno said the region has suitable soil for growing sunflowers. The agribusiness project is one of the empowerment programmes the organisation has lined up to address the high the rate of unemployment.
In sorghum farming, the organisation has partnered with prisons and the Kenya Breweries.
In Homa Bay prisons, they have planted sorghum in 50 acres, which is expected to mature in January.
The secretary general said there was a ready market as sorghum produced is sold to the breweries.
The partnership with the organisation is aimed at enhancing the reform agenda in prisons.
The inmates engaged in the programme will earn income besides gaining knowledge and skills in farming.
“We expect the inmates to continue with the farming initiatives when they complete their jail term,” Otieno said.
The partnership has also seen 200,000 trees planted within the prison. To scale up the sorghum farming, Otieno said they train the recruits and lease land for farming.
They grow sorghum that matures faster and is resilient to climate change.
“We train the youths and inmates regularly to enhance their skills,” Otieno said.
At Shanzu prison in Kakamega, the group has planted sorghum in 10 acres in partnership with the prison.
“So far we have covered 20 prisons in the country on matters of sorghum farming,” he said.
They also linked convicts who have finished their jail term with the community through the continuation with the agribusiness programmes. This, Otieno said, makes them productive.
The Green World has further partnered with financial institutions such as KCB, ABSA, SMEP and DTB to enhance the youth’s financial management.
“Those recruited are trained on financial literacy before they open accounts for payments and savings,” Otieno said.
He said the national and county governments are supportive and have embraced the youth empowerment initiatives.
The organisation has partnered with the Youth Enterprise Development Fund to enable beneficiaries to access loans for investment on income generating programmes.
The partnership will allow the Green world to organise youths in groups and register them for easy loan access.
“It is our organisation that will ensure registered youths spend the money prudently and ensure effective loan repayment,” Otieno said.
Kisumu county linkages and coordinating officer Daniel Owino praised the initiatives as the best efforts towards addressing climate change and unemployment.
Owino, who represented county agriculture chief officer Dr Paul Omanga, said the county will support the projects in the subcounties.