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Reflecting from Youth-led initiatives in responding to the impact of Covid-19 on the agricultural value chain and associated socioeconomic activities

30 June 2020
12:00 - 14:00

Date: 30 June 2020   
Time: 12h00 –14h00

Livestream via Zoom

Zoom link:

Presentations are available for download below:

Meeting Recording:

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John Ogboola, Farmer, Youth Advocate and an Agricultural Specialist
Nono Sekhoto-Iga, African Leadership Academy
Lehlohonolo Makaja, Founder of Africa Trading Network company
Rodney Managa, Africa Institute of South Africa, HSRC


Dr Palesa Sekhejane, Africa Institute of South Africa, HSRC

Disruptions in agricultural value chains and markets are severely affecting vulnerable communities, particularly the rural livelihoods. Due to lockdowns and movement restrictions, small farmers and agribusinesses are often unable to process their fresh produce and/or access markets. Declining demand and lower prices are leading to heightened food waste and income loss. Seasonal and migrant workers, no longer generating income, are returning to their areas of origin, with ripple effects on their households. Given that there is currently 821 million food-insecure people in the world, the World Food Program warns that 265 million people are on the brink of starvation if the countries do not prepare and act now, to secure access, avoid funding shortfalls and disruptions to trade. There is therefore a need to sensitize Policy makers on the impact and viable options for the reinforcement of food systems resilience against the shocks.

While most of government interventions are usually informed by high panel experts, inter-ministerial committees and parliamentarians, there’s a less-known story that also deserves attention – youth rising up to meet the challenge of this pandemic along the agricultural value chain and other socio-economic spaces. There could be even more benefits from  initiatives that are centred on the experiences of youth, urban and peri-urban farmers, street vendors and informal retailers, and low-income consumers to provide unique and direct insight into the impact of the Covid-19 pandemic on national and local food systems.

As we are celebrating the youth month in South Africa, this webinar will reflect on

(1)  How is Covid-19 affecting youth-led initiatives in the agricultural value chain and other socio-economic spaces;

(2) How are the youth initiatives and organisations coping with the crisis and

(3) What kind of support would the youth need to face this emergency situation.

Kindly RSVP by 29 June 2020

For further information contact: Arlene Grossberg | E:

The HSRC seminar series is funded by the Department of Science and Innovation (DSI). The views and opinions expressed therein as well as findings and statements of the seminar series do not necessarily represent the views of the DSI. Please also note that this seminar may be recorded and published on the HSRC podcast channel.

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