Global Forum on Food Security and Nutrition - YOUTH – FEEDING THE FUTURE - ADDRESSING THE CHALLENGES FACED BY RURAL YOUTH AGED 15 TO 17 IN PREPARING FOR AND ACCESSING DECENT WORK.
Date: Sunday, May 22, 2016
FAO's Decent Rural Employment Team and the FSN Forum invite you to join
the open online consultation:
YOUTH – FEEDING THE FUTURE. ADDRESSING THE CHALLENGES FACED BY RURAL
YOUTH AGED 15 TO 17 IN PREPARING FOR AND ACCESSING DECENT WORK .
IT IS SAFE TO SAY THAT RURAL YOUTH ARE THE PRESENT AND THE FUTURE OF
FOOD SECURITY AND RURAL POVERTY REDUCTION.
However, they face enormous challenges in preparing for and accessing
decent work; these challenges are even greater for youth under the age
With this online consultation, FAO is looking specifically into the age
group 15 to 17, which so far has not been targeted enough by programmes
and policies - falling through the cracks of both child and youth
initiatives. Your direct experience and feedback on addressing the
challenges would help us gain further knowledge on how to best support
these rural youth.
An international expert meeting later this year will build on the
recommendations generated in this online consultation, and participants
to the online consultation can apply to participate in this conference
Please read the FULL INTRODUCTION BELOW. The online consultation is
available on the FSN Forum, FAO's platform for knowledge sharing and
policy dialogue on food security and nutrition. Information is available
on the discussion webpage , also in French , Spanish , Arabic
, Chinese  and Russian  and comments are welcome in all of
TO PARTICIPATE, you can send your contribution directly to
FSNfirstname.lastname@example.org  or post online upon registration  to the
We look forward to a lively exchange!
_The FSN Forum team _
Rural youth are the future of food security and rural poverty reduction.
They are also the present as there are more young people today than ever
before – 1.8 billion between the ages of 10 and 24 – most of them
living in less developed countries and in rural areas. However, youth in
rural areas of developing countries face enormous challenges in
preparing for and accessing decent work, including in agriculture. These
challenges are even greater for youth under the age of 18.
This online consultation invites you to help identify the solutions that
can address these challenges. Your contributions will inform the policy
and programme recommendations issued by the international expert meeting
“Youth – feeding the future: Addressing the challenges faced by
rural youth aged 15 to 17 in preparing for and accessing decent work”
that will be held by FAO later this year. Selected contributors to the
online consultation could also be invited to participate in the expert
meeting. (See concept note  and participation request form ).
_Why are we concerned, and what opportunities do we see?_
Many youth are working poor, and the youth underemployment situation
will continue to worsen if left unaddressed, as millions of young people
enter the labour market. At the same time, there is the problem of child
labour, with 59% of all child labour taking place in agriculture. Many
youth in rural areas see few income and employment opportunities ahead
of them. Hence, many are leaving agriculture and their communities to
migrate, in search of opportunities in urban areas or abroad.
Yet, with ageing farm populations worldwide, agriculture needs young
people. To make agriculture and livelihoods sustainable and achieve food
security, better and more environmentally friendly practices need to be
introduced. Youth can be the drivers of agricultural and rural
transformations that create more inclusive and sustainable food systems.
Yet, youth need to see agriculture-related activities as viable and
attractive livelihoods that are profitable and match their aspirations
for a better future.
_What are the challenges facing rural youth aged 15-17?_
Rural young people in agriculture face challenges in accessing 1)
knowledge, information and education; 2) land; 3) finance; 4) decent
jobs, including green jobs; 5) markets; and 6) participation in policy
dialogue and rural organizations. These challenges apply broadly to all
rural youth in developing countries. Youth under 18 face additional, or
different, challenges in accessing decent jobs or becoming successful
entrepreneurs. For example, their status as minors can lead to
discrimination in hiring and impede access to productive resources and
services, such as finance, or their membership in representative
organizations. Adequate vocational training is often not available in
rural areas and the support for school-to-work transition is weak. Many
in this age group work in agriculture and often are exposed and
vulnerable to health and safety hazards. When youth aged 15-17 are
engaged in hazardous work, this work becomes child labour according to
international and national law.
· BASED ON YOUR EXPERIENCE, WHAT ARE THE SPECIFIC CHALLENGES RURAL
YOUTH AGED 15-17 FACE (DIFFERENT FROM THOSE OVER 18) IN MAKING A
(CURRENT OR FUTURE) LIVING IN AGRICULTURE AND RELATED ACTIVITIES?*
_How can these challenges be addressed?_
Particular attention needs to be paid to youth under 18 who have reached
the minimum age for employment as this stage in life is typically
decisive in how youth will transition from school to work and for the
likelihood of transiting out of poverty. Many others are already out of
school and are trying to provide for themselves and their families. Yet,
youth under 18 are often excluded in the design or implementation of
policies and programmes supporting youth employment.
We invite you to share your experience on how policies and programmes
can address the challenges faced by rural youth, in particular those
· HOW CAN POLICIES AND PROGRAMMES OVERCOME THE CHALLENGES FACED BY
RURAL YOUTH IN A COST-EFFECTIVE MANNER? IF THEY TARGET OLDER YOUTH, HOW
COULD WE APPLY THEM TO SUPPORT THOSE UNDER 18? PLEASE SHARE RELEVANT
EXAMPLES AND LESSONS FROM YOUR EXPERIENCE.
· WHAT ARE THE MOST BINDING CAPACITY CONSTRAINTS THAT YOU OR YOUR
INSTITUTION/ORGANIZATION ENCOUNTER WHEN DESIGNING, IMPLEMENTING AND
EVALUATING POLICIES AND PROGRAMMES AIMING TO ADDRESS THE ISSUES
AFFECTING RURAL YOUTH UNDER THE AGE OF 18? WHAT ARE THE DATA GAPS
REGARDING THE CHALLENGES AFFECTING RURAL YOUTH EMPLOYMENT AND
LIVELIHOODS THAT YOU PERIODICALLY ENCOUNTER?
· HOW CAN EDUCATION AND VOCATIONAL TRAINING IN RURAL AREAS BE IMPROVED
TO SUPPORT RURAL ADOLESCENTS AND YOUTH TO PRODUCTIVELY ENGAGE IN
AGRICULTURE OR RELATED ACTIVITIES? WHAT ARE THE SKILLS AND SUPPORT THEY
NEED? WHAT DOES THE SCHOOL-TO-WORK TRANSITION FOR RURAL YOUTH AGED 15-17
LOOK LIKE AND WHAT WORKS TO EFFECTIVELY SUPPORT RURAL YOUTH DURING THIS
· WHAT APPROACHES ARE MOST EFFECTIVE IN OVERCOMING THE ADDITIONAL
CHALLENGES RURAL YOUTH UNDER THE AGE OF 18 FACE IN ACCESSING DECENT
JOBS, INCLUDING (DECENT) GREEN JOBS (E.G. SKILLS MISMATCH, HEALTH AND
SAFETY CONDITIONS, DISCRIMINATION, EXCLUSION) OR BECOMING ENTREPRENEURS
(E.G. BARRIERS IN ACCESS TO FINANCE, PRODUCERS ORGANIZATIONS AND
We are particularly interested in policies and programmes that have
demonstrated results and achieved scale, and in the role that specific
stakeholders can play.
We look forward to a lively and stimulating discussion!
Decent Rural Employment Team
* In “agriculture and related activities” we are including farming,
livestock, fisheries and aquaculture, forestry, and natural resource
management and green jobs, financial and extension services, and
transport, processing and marketing within the agrifood system.
until 15 MAY 2016
HOW TO PARTICIPATE
Send your contribution to
or post it on the
FSN Forum website after becoming a member. WWW.FAO.ORG/FSNFORUM