SICA Rural Youth
The project is part of the implementation of the Central American Strategy for Rural Territorial Development (ECADERT) developed by the Executive Secretariat of the Central American Agricultural Council (SECAC), which has established as a priority the implementation of the Regional Action Plan for Rural Youth in the countries of the SICA region.
In Central America, 43% of the population lives in poverty and the average extreme poverty rate for SICA countries (20%) exceeds that of Latin America and the Caribbean (12%). The region has undergone a gradual process of urbanisation and currently the majority of its population (60%) resides in urban areas, a situation that is repeated in all countries with the exception of Belize. According to population projections by ECLAC’s Demographic Observatory for 2018, for SICA countries, on average, 31.7% of young people between 15 and 19 years of age will be rural.
Despite the scarce incentives and multiple barriers for young people to develop their life projects in the countryside, there is a growing awareness of the need to integrate young people, both because of their population weight and their capacity for innovation and commitment to rural development initiatives. Youth as bearers of valuable human capital, both in terms of their educational levels and their willingness to change, have great potential to revitalise the countryside and agriculture.
In this context, the project aims to improve the social and economic inclusion of rural youth in the SICA region, promoting and contributing to strengthening the impact of rural youth, in favour of their demands and interests, integrating them into the design of rural and territorial development proposals, valuing their capacities and empowering their leadership to mainstream the intergenerational approach in rural development investment supported by IFAD and SECAC, in cooperation with public and private institutions in the countries of the SICA region.