We are working with YMCA Nicaragua to support young people living in rural communities to build their resilience and their livelihoods’.
About the project
The project aims to strengthen their resilience and provide them with opportunities to be able to generate a sustainable income for themselves and their families.
Young people are being trained and supported to develop their own business. They will also work within their communities and learn how to develop a disaster risk action plan to ensure that communities are resilient and prepared to withstand disaster risks. Communities will develop a seed bank to store and protect seeds from disasters such as floods.
The country’s history
Although Nicaragua’s economy has seen some improvement in recent years, it is still the poorest country in Latin America. Around 45% of the population live on less than $1 a day. The largely rural population are mostly subsistence farmers who experience even higher levels of poverty, with around 60% on less than $1 a day. Problems are worsened by poor access to land and markets, limited social, health and education services, and limited water sources which reduces the productivity of the land. Technical knowledge among the population is also limited.
Nicaragua is also one of the three countries worldwide most prone to natural disasters. These include hurricanes and tropical storms. The country is 13th most vulnerable worldwide to earthquakes. All of this means high levels of food insecurity, with poor soil, water scarcity, low technical skills and lack of agricultural inputs having severe effects on the agrarian economy.
Many young people in Nicaragua have grown up on small farms. They often lack the farming skills to grow enough to provide for their families, and don’t have the education or business skills to be able to improve their life prospects.
How are we helping?
We recently partnered with YMCA Nicaragua to implement a project called “Strengthening resilience and rural livelihoods” which will run until March 2021. The project will support young people aged 15-30 and their families in 25 low income rural communities in Rivas, Boaco and Matagalpa. The aim of the project is to improve the earning potential of participants and strengthen the resilience of communities through sustainable agriculture, entrepreneurship and disaster risk reduction.
Young people will be trained in leadership skills and business skills, including financial planning, developing business plans, sales and marketing. They will also be taught how to access finances and provided with toolkits. This will help them to set up as sustainable rural businesses.
We will also help improve the agricultural skills of young people by giving them training in areas such as water management, risk assessment, sustainable farming and adaptation to climate change. We will facilitate irrigation systems, construct artisan wells, establish two community seed banks, and install weather stations and rain gauges. Young people will be trained in data collection, analysis and application so that they can better prepare for the risks posed by climate change.
What do we hope to achieve?
Train 400 young people (organised into 27 producer groups) in sustainable and climate