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FANRPAN Hosts Climate Change and Youth Agricultural National Dialogue in Swaziland
Swazi Royal Spa, Ezulwini Swaziland
13 March 2013



FANRPAN through the Coordinating Assembly of Non-Governmental Organisations, our node in Swaziland hosted a combined Climate Smart Agriculture and National Youth Policy Dialogue at the Swazi Royal Spa, Ezulwini Swaziland on the 13th of March 2013.

The national policy dialogue attended by representatives of youth organisations; government officials; farmers' organisations and civil society was officially opened by the Minister of Sports, Youth and Culture Hon. Hlobisile Ndlovu. In her remarks, the Honourable Minister highlighted the importance of streamlining efforts to integrate the youth into agricultural policy processes (see full speech attached).

The main plenary, saw Dr. Sepo Hachigonta of FANRPAN presenting an overview of FANRPAN's Youth and Climate Smart Agriculture programmes. He stressed the need for a holistic approach to youth involvement in agriculture and in policy development. He also talked about the FANRPAN approach of Climate Smart Agriculture practices which aims to collectively increase productivity, ensures adaptation and providing mitigation co-benefits.

Other high level presenters included Mr Khulekani Nkambule from AgriBusiness, an industry publication in Swaziland who presented findings of a study conducted on youth and agribusiness (see presentation attached). Whist Mr Sibusiso Mondlane from the United National Food Agriculture Organisation (FAO) office shared a youth in agriculture programme they are implementing in collaboration with the Ministry of Agriculture.

The programme also featured two key parallel sessions. In Parallel Session 1 on Climate Smart Agriculture, the Evidence-based Policies for Climate Smart Agriculture and the Strengthening Evidence Based Climate Change Adaptation (SECCAP) programmes funded by the Norwegian Agency for Development Cooperation ( NORAD) and the International Development Research Center (IDRC) respectively were discussed in detail.

Parallel Session 2 on Youth and Agriculture Policies featured a keynote presentation of the FANRPAN commissioned Swaziland Report on Current and Emerging Youth Policies and Initiatives with a Special Focus on Links to Agriculture. In the ensuing discussions, participants unpacked themes such as Youth Perceptions on Agriculture, National Policies as key drivers, Institutions and Mechanisms for Youth Engagement and opportunities for youth in agriculture.

Recommendations from the national dialogue will be taken forward in the form of a policy advisory note which will be submitted to relevant government ministries.

Dr. Sepo Hachigonta with the Minister of Youth Hon. Hlobisile Ndlovu (R) and the Director of Youth Services in the Ministry of Youth Mr. Thwala
Dr. Sepo Hachigonta with the Minister of Youth Hon. Hlobisile Ndlovu (R) and the Director of Youth Services in the Ministry of Youth Mr. Thwala
Dialogue Participants with the Hon. Minister of Youth Hlobisile Ndlovu
Dialogue Participants with the Hon. Minister of Youth Hlobisile Ndlovu

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