Youth in Agriculture – Reaping the benefits of agriculture
She’s 17 and has a thriving chicken farm that supplies her community in Antigua and Barbuda with fresh eggs.
Katyann Burnett started off assisting in her grandmother’s chicken farm but now manages her own poultry business and is proud to contribute to the agriculture sector in her country.
“I do hope that this encourages not only young folks, but also just anyone to get up and do whatever it is that they want to do in terms of agriculture or any work at all. Take your time; don’t rush but do as much as you can, invest as much time and energy into your work…,” she advised.
Hers is a testimony to the fact that it is never too early to begin honing one’s agri-preneurial abilities, and an example of how each individual can play their part in the regional quest for food security.
Like Katyann, John Jones of Barbados started farming at a young age. He recalls growing crops like lettuce and tomatoes in his backyard and selling them for “extra pocket money”. He now has a 13-acre farm and a degree in agricultural business under his belt. He believes in giving back to the community that spawned his success and, in this regard, has added an educational component to his farm – teaching others to implement good practices, “how to farm and keep their books properly… “
He encourages youth to get on board the agriculture train as there’s room for everyone: “There are some great careers – pig farmers, sheep farmers, chicken farmers, buying and selling, exporting… The aspects of this industry (are) so diverse that there is a space for everyone.”
Entrepreneurship is nothing new to Kittitian Anastacia Elliott. As a matter of fact, from the examples set in her household, she knew “entrepreneurship was where I would end up”.
The eldest of six children, Anastacia observed her mother’s approach to finances and thus learned the importance of earning a livelihood, saving, and managing money from a young age.
“I was always encouraged into entrepreneurship. It was something that the women in my family were encouraged to (do) – not to go and work for anyone… but to have your own business …,” she recounted.
Today, her business that adds value to local agricultural products creating items including a skin care line, is thriving.
Listen as Anastacia shares her journey in the field of agro-processing.
Katyann, John and Anastacia are three of the young people in the Caribbean Community who are featured in the ‘I Am Agriculture: Youth in Agriculture’ social media campaign undertaken by the CARICOM Secretariat with support from the United Nations World Food Programme. You can find their stories and others on our YouTube channel.