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Frequently Asked Questions


Can FAO provide funds to support programs, projects and activities of rural youth programs?

A: A primary role of the FAO Rural Youth Progamme is to provide research and experience-based knowledge, information and technical assistance to help government and non-government organizations in member countries strengthen and expand rural youth programming. Although FAO is not considered a funding agency, financial resources are available to meet some special needs. One such source is the Technical Cooperation Programme (TCP) which is designed to help member countries meet urgent needs for technical and emergency assistance and to contribute to their capacity building.


How does FAO define "youth"?

A: There is no universally accepted definition of youth. Youth have been described many different ways; sometimes as a particular age group, as a stage of life or as an attitude. For statistical purposes, the United Nations General Assembly in 1985 for the International Youth Year first defined youth as people between the ages of 15 and 24. In 1995, when the General Assembly adopted the World Programme of Action for Youth to the Year 2000 and Beyond, it again defined youth as 15 to 24, but acknowledged that the age range varies among different countries and societies.

  In its relationships to governments and organizations, FAO uses a wide range of ages depending on the specific definition of "youth" used within a particular country or a specific organization. The age range surprisingly goes anywhere from 8 to 40. For global programming purposes, FAO defines the priority age range for rural youth development from 10 to 25. Field experience shows that to bring about important changes in attitude and behaviour, community-based, non-formal educational programmes for young people in rural areas must begin at an early age. This is especially true in areas such as HIV/AIDS education and helping young people gain an appreciation for agriculture and rural life early in life. Research shows that by age 15, a young person has more or less established patterns of behaviour and ways of thinking.

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