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Home Harvest Money Expo Students Take On Agriculture

Students Take On Agriculture

by Wangah Wanyama
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By Prossy Nandudu

Agriculture is one of the most under looked sectors by students while at school. But in the era, where the country is battling the high unemployment rate, the government has identified agriculture as one of the sectors that should absolve the youth that are not employed.

According to the Ministry of Gender Labor and Social Development, youth unemployment stands at 64 and 70% and yet about 400,000 youths are released annually into the job market to compete for about 9000 available jobs.
It is the reason why some schools have decided to embrace practical agriculture to show students the opportunities that exist in the sector. At the just concluded Harvest Money Expo, students from different schools, who have benefited from agriculture shared their testimonies to inspire others.
One of the students that have benefited from agriculture include Jennifer Namwase, a student at Iganga SS Girls School. After observing that that meagre income, earned by her parents, who are both teachers, wasn’t enough, she decided to enrol into the school’s agriculture club.
In the Agriculture club, students are exposed to various activities ranging from production all the way to processing, through value addition. It is from this club that she identified poultry farming as a quick income generating venture.

While on holiday, she requested for space from her parents to put into practice what she had learnt. She was allowed to start with a few broiler chickens, which fetched her sh1.5m at the end of four weeks.
“The birds were looking good, so I asked my mum what I could do next. She talked to her friends, that is how people got to know and  started buying the birds especially those who roast chicken by the roadside,” Namwase said.

From her first attempt she earned close to sh1.5m.She used part of the money to restock since broilers mature within four months. From the second attempt, the earning doubled.

“This time I told my mum, I would pay my school fees, keep some money for pocket money. I gave my mum the rest of the money because it was time for me to go back to school, so I couldn’t keep the chicken,” she adds.

From her experiment at home, her mother never hesitates to give her money whenever she makes a request.

“My mum can give money every time I ask for it because she knows I know how to make money, before that, I would ask for money, but mum kept reminding me that money doesn’t grow on trees, so getting money from her was not easy,” she added. The project has since expanded to forestry among others.

Iganga SSS students checking on mushrooms. Picture by Herbert Musoke

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