With the support of the Empower Foundation, Action for the City has implemented “The Youth and Organic Agriculture” program in Cam Thanh commune, Hoi An. This program aims to create sustainable local employment for disadvantaged young people, deepen their love for their hometown, and take advantage of the youth’s strengths to promote organic agriculture.
Through this program, young people took part in training on organic agriculture and tour guide skills. The training was delivered by officers from the Committee Division of Economics, and the Committee Division of Trade & Tourism, Hoi An city. In addition, these youth also participated in various activities, including guiding student tours to our Thanh Dong organic farm, joining our sales teams, and delivering and marketing Hoi An organic vegetables.
After 6 months in the program, a group of 5 young participants have had considerable success in using their knowledge gained in the training courses to run many farm tours for students. In the first semester of the 2014 – 15 school year, they were farm tour guides for a total of 758 students at secondary schools (27 classes) and high schools (5 classes). In the second semester, they gave farm tours for 23 classes at secondary schools and 7 classes at high schools in Hoi An city - around 1000 students.
There have also been 3 participants involved in our sales team - their tasks include receiving orders, correspondence, compiling orders, informing farmers, delivering, and carrying out promotional activities. Thanks to their support, 4 tons of vegetables were sold under the Hoi An Organic brand. Hoi An Organic products were also introduced at 3 big events - ‘Car free day’, ‘Bike to play’, and the ‘Cam Nam corn festival’. Additionally, there have been 8 issues of the ‘Hoi An Organic Vegetables’ newsletter monthly sent to consumers.
Their activities not only facilitate the development of organic agriculture, but also demonstrate job opportunities in the field of organic agriculture for youth. There are currently 2 young participants receiving a stable income from their work in the Hoi An Organic sales team. Additionally, the tour guide group (of five youth) earn extra money from farm tours.Even though the organic agriculture farm in Hoi An is only 1 year old, it has a great deal of favorable features, such as the youth’s participation, farmers’ commitment, and consumers’ support. The 2015 - 2020 development strategy of the City Authority is to promote more organic agriculture. Our farm in Hoi An has the potential to become the highlight of the organic production in Central Vietnam, especially our model for involving the youth in organic agriculture.