As the youth population explodes worldwide, Root Capital is turning a demographic challenge into an opportunity for impact.
Jobs in rural communities are often low paying and sporadic, with little opportunity for advancement—prompting many young people to migrate. Root Capital’s Talent Partnerships program places young graduates into internships at local agricultural enterprises, creating a win/win situation: jobs for the next generation and a stronger talent pool for rural businesses.
Jeannette Mukayisenga completed a Talent Partnership at Kopakaki, a Rwandan coffee cooperative, in 2021. After graduating with a bachelor’s degree in crop production, Jeannette was unemployed and spent her time helping her parents on their small family farm. “Some agriculture projects in Rwanda don’t engage women as technicians because they think that women are weak,” said Jeannette. “Which is not true.”
Jeannette saw Root Capital’s Talent Partnership program on social media and knew that she could put her expertise to use training coffee farmers on good agricultural practices, such as mulching, applying fertilizer and planting shade trees. Training farmers can be challenging, especially during the rainy season when travel is difficult. But, Jeannette says that these practices “[when] done well can be a response to the impacts caused by climate change.”
At the end of a successful Talent Partnership, Jeannette accepted a full-time employment offer in the technical assistance department at Kopakaki. Now she’s looking to the future. “We have to increase mobilization of the younger generation to engage in coffee farming,” she says. “Youth are the power of this country.”
Youth Placed in Talent Partnerships Globally
of Graduates Secure Full-Time Employment