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A year of SFYN in Uganda
Posted 4 years, 1 month ago in SFYN Blogs
It’s now a year since Uganda joined an international movement of young food activists. My name is Ivan Kigongo, a male Ugandan junior agronomist aged 23. I’m currently coordinating the national SFYN activities in Uganda and also volunteering in other slow food projects like the 10,000 gardens in Africa and food communities helping them with technical support.
I and the team; Hunnington Kizito, John Kiwagalo, Carolyne Nakakeeto and Umar Kityo among others are moving around the country, meeting, sensitizing and registering passionate young food activists who seek to bring about changes in the field of food production and consumption, bringing them under the umbrella of Good, Clean and Fair food philosophy.
The Network in Uganda currently has over
200 registered members united in their different groups. These are from the different regions of the country. The number of registered members is expected to be over 700 by the end of the year and with a proper regional distribution throughout the country.
Uganda and Africa have a population made of more young people than the old, this means they are the main consumers of food produced in these areas. Slow Food Youth Network therefore comes out and sensitize the youth to get involved in the production of food and/or even become the main producers of food. Due to the fact that they are young aged, we believe they have the power/energy to participate in the farm and production activities and not forgetting the sustainable production systems which can feed our future.
SFYN-Uganda is basically focusing on uniting the various groups of young small scale producers, cooks, chefs, students among others, promoting cooperation among these groups through facilitating the exchange of knowledge and ideas and raising awareness among youth citizens and consumers about the slow food philosophy through various activities under Slow Food Projects and Events. Such activities include gardening participation in the 10,000 Gardens in Africa Project where every SFYN group is encouraged to have a Slow Food garden, the Ark of Taste Project to defend African Biodiversity right from the young generation and the establishment of the Chefs Alliance to connect young producers to groups of chefs and restaurants in their localities. Events among others include; “Taste the Biodiversity” which is geared to reconnect young people to the thousands of local, indigenous and traditional vegetable species in Uganda; “Food Wise and Food Worth” which are special events to make young producers and co-producers of the best food to eat that respects biodiversity and African gastronomy as well as understanding where to find the real good, clean and fair food. These events also give special recognition to good, clean and fair young producers and eating/market places. “The Ug Disco Soup” will be organized this year basically focusing on reducing food wastes and on farm losses of food.
My personal aim is to promote Slow Food and its philosophy through networking between the youths in Uganda and Africa at large and also linking African young generation to the rest of the world and hope to achieve the goal with the help of a strong Global SFYN team.