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The Yara Prize honors youth entrepreneurship and policy advocacy
20 August 2013


Aug 19, 2013

Oslo (2013-08-19): The Yara Prize 2013 is being awarded to Mr. Nnaemeka Ikegwuonu, founder and CEO of the Smallholders Foundation in Nigeria, and Dr. Lindiwe Majele Sibanda, CEO of the Food, Agriculture and Natural Resources Policy Analysis Network (FANRPAN).

The Yara Prize Committee has selected two prominent African laureates for their work for African farmers and for the continent's green revolution. The award recognizes their effective entrepreneurial work which has spread knowledge that has inspired smallholder farmers and youth to improve their lives, and their policy dialogue and advocacy which has enabled change in the African agricultural sector.

Both laureates have, through personal commitment and special efforts, translated ideas on the development of African agriculture into impactful results in their respective areas of work. They are both examples of the can-do spirit and drive that is playing a vital role in transforming agriculture in Africa.

"Yara creates impact by addressing global challenges. By awarding the Yara Prize, we salute the champions of sustainable agricultural development. I wish to extend my personal congratulations to the laureates," Jørgen Ole Haslestad, President and CEO of Yara and Chairman of the Yara Prize Committee, said.

The two laureates will be celebrated during a Yara Prize Ceremony in Maputo, Mozambique, on 4 September in connection with the AGRF 2013.

Mr. Nnaemeka Ikegwuonu's award - communicating for impact

Mr. Ikegwuonu is being awarded the prize for his entrepreneurial work of using radio as transmitter of sustainable agricultural development and environmental conservation beneficial to rural poor small farmers in the Imo State in south-east Nigeria. Mr. Ikegwuonu and the Smallholders Foundation develops and broadcasts 10 hours of educational radio programs daily to 250,000 listeners. The radio programs are held in the local Igbo language. Since 2007, 65 percent of his radio program listeners have increased their agricultural yield by 50 percent and their household income by 45 percent.

Mr. Ikegwuonu has a goal of reaching 3.5 million farmers in almost 5000 villages in his own region. Since 2008, 4500 students have been trained and 10 school gardens of Nigeria have been established. Through the Future Farmers Program, Mr. Ikegwuonu imparts sustainable agricultural, environmental management, entrepreneurship and financial management skills to young people through the establishment of the School and Community Gardens in secondary schools and rural communities across Nigeria.

For more information: www.smallholdersfoundation.org

Dr. Lindiwe Majele Sibanda's award - advocating for impact

Dr. Lindiwe Majele Sibanda is awarded the prize for her many years of work generating knowledge and facilitating dialogue to develop informed, research-based development through policy and advocacy across Africa as CEO of the Food, Agriculture and Natural Resources Policy Analysis Network (FANRPAN), where she has served since 2004.

FANRPAN is perceived to be one of the most influential policy networks across the African region. Its focus areas include policy research and advocacy work on food policy, agricultural productivity, natural resources and environment, and the impact of HIV/AIDS on farmers' livelihoods. Dr. Sibanda has played a global leadership role in increasing the visibility and importance of agriculture as a key development driver. In 2009, Dr. Sibanda led the global "No-Agriculture, No-Deal" campaign and mobilized African civil society organizations to push for the inclusion of agriculture in the UNFCCC climate change negotiations.

Dr. Sibanda has built the advocacy capacity of FANRPAN through her innovative use of strategic outreach and communication activities, which help leverage and amplify the work done by the organization and its partners at the ground level. Through this multi-pronged approach Dr. Sibanda has effectively built recognition for FANRPAN as one of the most recognized and trusted voices on African agriculture and food security, including a strong focus on women farmers.

FANRPAN extended its mandate to become Africa-wide in 2012, and has identified youth as an important stakeholder group to be further nurtured and included in agricultural policy processes, launching the FANRPAN Youth in Agriculture Award in 2012.

For more information: www.fanrpan.org

About the Yara Prize

The Yara Prize for an African Green Revolution seeks to contribute to the transformation of African agriculture and food availability, within a sustainable context, thereby helping to reduce hunger and poverty. The Yara Prize is based on nominations of candidates who are carefully evaluated by the Yara Prize Committee. The Yara Prize consists of USD 60,000, which will be split between the laureates, a crystal trophy and a diploma. The Yara Prize was handed out in Oslo from 2005 to 2009. In 2012, it moved to Africa where it was handed out as part of AGRF 2012 in Arusha, Tanzania. The Yara Prize 2013 will be handed out during a ceremony in Maputo, Mozambique on Wednesday 4 September. The Yara Prize is now handed out annually in Africa. Read more at: www.yaraprize.com

To the editorial offices:

Pictures of the two laureates can be downloaded here:
www.yaraprize.com

For more information, please contact:

Bernhard Stormyr, Director of Communications, Yara International ASA
Phone: +47 9010 7685
Mail: bernhard.stormyr@yara.com

Yara delivers solutions for sustainable agriculture and the environment. Our fertilizers and crop nutrition programs help produce the food required for the growing world population. Our industrial products and solutions reduce emissions, improve air quality and support safe and efficient operations. Founded in Norway in 1905, Yara has a worldwide presence with sales to 150 countries. Safety is always our top priority.


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