The 22nd African Union Summit, with the theme Agriculture and Food Security, could not have come at a better time than this. African leaders and civil society organizations are meeting to reaffirm their commitment to food security and adopting new measures to save millions who face imminent danger. Agriculture is Africa’s backbone and contributes over 70% of the GDP in many countries.

Famine is not a new phenomenon and is as old as recorded history and has adversely affected much of Sub-Saharan Africa. Despite the giant strides that have been taken to “arrest” the situation, famine has remained elusive.

With the emergence of new threats like climate change, now is the time to take decisive action.

The most challenging aspect has been to find the pathways to use to divert such a catastrophe. As a young leader from Rwanda, I believe that in order for the world to achieve food security, we need a holistic approach that includes both government and civil society organizations. I am proud to be the voice of those women who could not be able to be here and upon my return to Rwanda, I will be able to implement and share my experiences with thousands of young women.

I envision a world where women are economically empowered and for this to take place, women should be given the means.

Photo Credit: Fintrac Inc. via USAID Flickr
Photo Credit: Fintrac Inc. via USAID Flickr

Trainings on modern agricultural practices would go a long way in making them self-reliant. Provision of pest resistant seeds to vulnerable communities would also be a step in the right direction. Land reform programs that address the existing unfair distribution of land are needed so that women are brought on board. Such measures that promote food security will make it easy for the implementation of other programs that are related to sexual and reproductive health of women.

I applaud African governments, World YWCA, YWCA Rwanda and other stakeholders for the existing partnership in a bid to promote food security in Africa.

RobinahMy name is Kyambadde Robinah Salinge. I hold a Bachelor’s degree in Social Sciences and I am completing my Master’s degree in International Relations at Mount Kenya University Kigali-Campus. I am the Project Manager of SRHR project at YWCA Rwanda. I am privileged and honoured to be attending the 22nd African Union Summit, in Addis Ababa, Ethiopia. Great thanks goes to World YWCA and YWCA Rwanda who have made it possible for me to be at the AU Summit, where I have got the chance of sharing more about the problems my fellow young women and I are facing in Africa. 

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2 Responses

  1. This is so inspiring.

    The truth is, young women are what we have to concretize the efforts of the women long gone or those still “pushing or pulling” as I love to put it. I am thus happy Kyambadde Robinah Salinge was able to attend the summit and is sharing what she learnt, did and intends to continue doing thereafter.

    Now, coming to main issues here, Agriculture is not only important to Africa, but to the world at large. I know of no one who will love to go for days on an empty stomach unless they are fasting.

    The problem is that, in Africa, while the women who actually dominate the agricultural sector toil and swat themselves away, their efforts often end up only to feed their households for “a day or less”.

    A lot has to be done. There is need for more mechanization of cultivation and production. There is need for better management of resources. There is need for more training and in this light, I just came across a free e training in Development Evaluation at and I hope young women like Robinah take advantage of such.

    Most importantly, security greatly affects food production and income generation there from. I sincerely hope this too was discussed at the summit or maybe this will be another post all together?

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