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Leveraging on social media to promote agriculture

In the Stone Age, it is common to see farmers ride on bicycles while most trek several miles and distances to their farms with pride that they are off to do their daily business of tilling the land and raising the seed of hope to feed the world.

In this new age and era where the message of agriculture is being preached to young people to secure the food system, the future and our agricultural golden heritage, leveraging on social media has become paramount to making agriculture cool as a career pathway to prosperity.

Conduct an online survey or walk into offices to speak to scholars or an average man on the street to voice their opinions about young people, they will arguably say - an average youth is smart, intelligent and able to use the power of internet and technology to proffer solutions to emerging issues across diverse sectors. Serving as the leading global youth network of young professionals in agriculture, YPARD has its structure well-articulated and creating the changes required in the sector. One of the core mandate of YPARD and the Nigeria chapter is promoting agriculture among youth and develop the capacity of young people in relevant component of agriculture that contribute to scaling up their potentials and skills in transforming the agricultural sector and ensuring good business practices. In this regards, working with institutions, bodies and individual young professionals who are passionate about young people and agriculture have become an adaptable model.

YPARD Nigeria team organized a training session on social media and the power to scale up agribusinesses for the second batch of the GoGreeners under the one month free agricultural empowerment bootcamp organized by the Nigeria Agricultural Ambassador, Lead Convener of the Go Green Africa Project and the founder of Highhill Agribusiness Incubation (HABDEC), Adeniyi Sola Bunmi.

The social media training engaged thirty participants who termed themselves as GoGreeners and currently undertaking free agricultural empowerment program on 4Ps – Potatoes, Plantain, Pineapple and Pawpaw for one month. Before the start of the training, a pre-survey was done to know the number of social media users and the purpose of use. It is amazing that the participants have some level of social media usage but none is promoting their agricultural enterprise on it.

The training explored different topics including the introduction and uses of the different social media channels and social networking tools - Facebook, Twitter, Instagram etc., social media strategies for agribusiness ventures, the art of blogging to convene agribusiness ideas, information and practices beyond the farm. The training which lasted for 5hours was facilitated by John Agboola and Majid Tokurah. Both facilitators ensured a participatory training using individual farm enterprise as case studies, role-play and practical demonstration of the different sessions.

An assessment of the training was conducted after questions and answers and the participants expressed satisfaction on the training and the amazing work being done by YPARD.