Young farmers living in rural areas of Nicaragua are learning sustainable farming methods, and engaging local markets and shops so they can earn a living. 23 year-old David, tells us how the skills he has learnt helped him support his 18 month-old daughter.
“I learnt about the project because the YMCA staff came to my villages and sensitised people about sustainable farming, so I got in touch with the community leaders. When I learnt about the project I got really excited. I was already an active member of my community and was promoting sports with young people in my village, but I haven’t been earning any income and so I have been looking to find a way to support my family.”
David had to leave school early because of an illness. and with his lack of qualifications, he struggled to find opportunities to earn an income.
“I wasn’t born here but I have been living in this area for six years,” said David, “what brought me here was the local high school as I wanted to finish school but I had to drop out after three years because I suffered from constant migraines.”
Young people and their families will train and learn skills to increase the diversity and size of their crop yields, and reduce their environmental footprint when growing their food. Nicaragua YMCA will then help almost 1,200 young people with increased access to business opportunities so they can earn a livelihood from selling their crops.
“I don’t own any land, but I am renting a small piece of land about 30 minutes walk from here. I grow maize and beans on the land, and it is enough to feed my family.”
“It was a blessing to have support from the YMCA. Before we felt blindfolded. Now we know how to use techniques to conserve the soil and increase our crop yield. I used to blame other things when the land didn’t produce enough food for us. Now I know better.”
“I want only the best for my daughter. What she does is up to her, but I will show her all my skills in farming so that she can help me.”