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Parliamentarians Action #4 |Engaging young women and men in rural and agriculture development and resilience building in the face of COVID-19 and beyond

November 12, 2020 11:00 am - 1:30 pm CET

(Open to public)

joint banner fao oxfam iisd

Africa has the highest youth population in the world, with 218 million people aged between 15 and 24. This burgeoning youth population presents a great opportunity for harnessing a potential demographic dividend, but also economic and social challenges that can lead to political instability or conflict. With the COVID-19 crisis exacerbating the existing vulnerabilities of rural young women and men, better and more age- and gender-responsive policy and legislation become crucial. 

The fourth virtual dialogue in the Parliamentarians’ Action for Gender Equality and Resilient Food Systems in Response to COVID-19 series was held on November 12, 2020, from 11 a.m. to 1.30 p.m. 

This dialogue provided a space for parliamentarians, youth, and other stakeholders to discuss how to engage young women and men in our efforts to eradicate rural poverty, food insecurity, and malnutrition, as well as measures to foster youth empowerment, gender equality, and the Sustainable Development Goals. 

The specific objectives include: 
•    Raising awareness on the challenges faced by rural young women and men and the interlinkages with rural poverty and food insecurity, and potential opportunities to strengthen youth rights.
•    Sharing policies and strategies in the Economic Community of West African States (ECOWAS) region on youth employment in the agribusiness sector and enhance parliamentarians’ commitment toward the achievement of the SDGs, as well as the objectives of the ECOWAS regional support strategy to youth employability in the agro-sylvo-pastoral and fisheries sectors.
•    Promoting an exchange of experiences and good practices among parliamentarians, regional economic communities, youth organizations, and other stakeholders on approaches to empower rural young women and men and promote gender equality during and beyond the COVID-19 pandemic.

This virtual meeting was the fourth in a series of dialogues organized by the Food and Agriculture Organization of the United Nations (FAO), IISD, and Oxfam as part of their policy support to the ECOWAS Network of Parliamentarians on Gender Equality and Investments in Agriculture and Food Security. The objective of the series is to enhance the role of African parliamentarians in mitigating the gender-differentiated impacts of COVID-19 on food systems.

Watch the event's full recording

Event hashtag: #ParliamentAction2020



M. Robert Guei, FAO Sub-Regional Coordinator for West Africa
Mr Alain Sy Traore, Director for Agriculture & Rural Development, ECOWAS Commission
Ms Francesca Dalla Valle, Youth Employment and Institutional Partnerships Specialist, FAO
Ms Elizabeth Nsimadala, President of East Africa Farmer Federation (EAFF) & Pan-African Farmer Organization (PAFO)
Ms Bogolo Kenewendo, former MP and former Minister of Investment, Trade and Industry, Botswana
Hon. Christopher de Venecia, Member of the House of Representatives, Philippines
Ms Melissa Alamo, Youth focal point of PAKISAMA, member organization of the Asian Farmer Association (AFA)
Hon. Jacquiline Amogin, Member of the Parliament of Uganda and the Pan African parliament, Vice Chair of the African Parliamentarians Network against Hunger and Malnutrition
Mr Khamutima Tumwebaze, Chairman of the Young Farmer Champion Network (YOFCHAN), Uganda
Mr Khadim Diop, President of the National Youth Council, Senegal


M. Joshua Sena Alouka, National coordinator, Youth Volunteers for the Environment