Youth opportunity spaces in low-emission dairy development in Kenya
This note (PDF) by CCAFS-CGIAR aimed to understand how intensification in the dairy sector, in combination with changing urban-rural dynamics, influences young women and men’s employment opportunities in Kenya. Total national production of dairy fails to meet demand in Kenya, thereby is Kenya developing a Green Climate Fund (GCF) to promote low-emission development in the dairy challenge. The findings of the research are : 1) Youth participation in dairy value chains is heavily contingent upon a variety of geographic factors. 2) The work opportunities and possibilities are heavily gendered. 3) Current norms and social relations in the community and household mediate youth’s acquisition of capitcal, assets and knowledge. 4) Intergenerational tensions limit youth empowerment and voice in dairy cooperatives. 5) There are four common youth pathways in dairy: youth who enter as laboreres to earn money during a phase of uncertainty – youth with intention to explore whether dairy can be stapping stone into more remunerative positions in the value chain – youth with a vision of dairy as a core livelihood strategy – youth in later stages. 6) Youth are agents of change who alter social norms through their personal practices and relations. The research resulted in a number of policy recommendations. Firstly, there should be invested in both formal and informal dairy value chains to support more inclusive youth employment opportunities. Entry in the informal sector can be a gateway to more formalized work opportunities. Secondly, diverse youth interests and multiple ways that youth engage in the dairy sector should be supported. Thirdly, investments should be in youth-specific collective action initiatives through inclusive financial mechanisms. Lastly, strategic attention should be given to social and rural development outcomes in the design of low emission development interventions and specific focus on how to increase the potential of intensification to support youth employment and youth equitable outcomes.