Youth group finds a niche in Capsicum growing

Aberdares Life Impact Youth Group, in Njabini, Kiburu ward, Kinangop sub-county members can now smile after years of being dormant. Started in 2010, the group was dormant as they didn’t have money to support the activities they had in mind. Last year they benefited with a greenhouse as part of the Nyandarua County Youth Empowerment Programme, a flagship youth-centered programme by His Excellency Governor Francis Kimemia.

After support and training in market survey and identification, under an entrepreneurship capacity building, Aberdares Life Impact Youth Group decided to venture into capsicum farming. Eight months later, the once dormant group which was struggling to break-even, had found its correct entrepreneurial footing.

“We received a greenhouse and supporting infrastructure from the County Government through its Youth Department in 2018, and after further training, we decided to try Capsicum farming and marketing through market linkages provided in the training by officers seconded to support the groups. Since then, we have made over Kshs. 800,000 through sales,” says Susan Mworia, the group secretary.

Nyandarua Governor Francis Kimemia with members of Aberdares Life Impact Youth Group when he visited their farm at Njabini

Governor Kimemia visited the group and was impressed by the progress they had made. “Youth empowerment must involve both training and provision of requisite supporting tools. This flagship programme which started last year offers our youth a perfect platform to empower themselves, while at the same time helping replicate the successes and lessons learnt,” the Governor said as he listened to the group leaders recount their journey in the last one year.

Some of the support offered to the youth groups in the county which are involved in agriculture include soil testing, subsidized farm inputs, and agricultural extension services.

“This group is a clear demonstration of how to create youth employment and also making agriculture attractive to the youth. Deploying technology, training them on modern farming practices, providing them with extension services and creating dependable and reliable market linkages will help our youth create wealth while making agriculture attractive,” the County head added.

The Governor also visited the nearby Njabini Farmers Cooperative society which benefited with two milk coolers – provided by the Department of Cooperatives with a capacity of over 10,000 liters of milk per day: “This is part of our value addition strategy which involves cold storage and empowerment of our cooperatives to preserve their produce for better pricing,” Governor Kimemia said at the facility.

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