Coffee Break Episode 5: Youth in Uganda
The Importance of Youth in Coffee
We invite you to take a Coffee Break with us! As a non-profit, here at International Coffee Partners (ICP) each ICP shareholder has motivations and aims that we therefore jointly put into practice with our work in smallholder coffee farming communities around the world.
In the last episode, our Chairperson of International Coffee Partners (ICP) and Chair of Löfbergs of Sweden, Kathrine Löfberg, elaborated why we believe that youth are the future of coffee, and we first of all need to engage with them. Therefore, ICP, along with its implementing partner Hanns R. Neumann Stiftung, wants to show in this edition how that is impacting young people’s life on the ground in Uganda.
„Everything is moving on smoothly“, smiles Teddy Nakyambadda. She is a young farmer from Mityana District in Uganda. A while ago she joined our ICP-project in the region. „Before growing coffee, we could have it tough to get something to eat or to pay for school-fees“, she remembers. Lack of knowledge and exchange with the older generations results in growing dis-identification of young farmers in the region. Many are migrating to the capital Kampala – which often results in precarious employment situations.
Together everything becomes easier
With the ICP-project, Teddy learned not only good agricultural practices and how to execute post-harvesting methods. She learned to see her farm as a business because of that and the smallholder families around as a community that needs to work together.
“After the training, I started to save through the Village Savings and Loan Association. Group work is very easy and eases everything”, she refers also to her local Depot Committee. After the harvest, the group collects the coffee and stores it until prices are higher.
But for many other young farmers in the area, life is still difficult as they did not get access to information and knowledge as Teddy did through the ICP-Project. For them, Teddy became a role model. “I train them in good agricultural practices. Such as measuring the garden, bottle irrigation and pruning.”
Although Teddy and other youth in the region are progressing with motivation, a big challenge is still ahead: Climate Change. Adaptation of coffee production to the effects of a changing climate becomes more and more important. Teddy is ready to explore this and to contribute to learning’s about new methodologies.
Working together in this pre-competitive and non-profit way, ICP has been able to make a lasting impact with youth and coffee-growing communities by reaching over 83,000 families since 2001.