Sunday, August 7, 2011

ICTs improving youth opportunities in rural areas

Kamau communicating with his customers

I simply take my mobile phone, notify my customers on available vegetables via SMS and there I go, orders start streaming in.” Said Kamau.
What an easy way of selling your agricultural produce?
This is just one way of how ICT could be used in the short to mid term in improving access to markets for agricultural products. In the social media, facebook has a marketplace app that links buyers to sellers. This is a virtual market where people can sell their wares.
Kamau goes a head to say that despite the high risk of being robbed, he’s never a worried man. For all the sells he make the money is kept in his M-pesa account - another innovative way of using ICT in your businesses.
The “411 GET IT” Short Message Service (SMS) a joint venture between Safaricom and the Kenya Agricultural Commodity Exchange (KACE), launched in July, 2007 links sellers and buyers of agricultural commodities. Through this service, farmers get competitive and transparent market prices.SMS is used to disseminate market information on mobile phones. KACE first collects and processes information from several markets in Kenya and transmits it via a Global System for Mobile Communications (GSM) modem to Safaricom where the Safaricom clients can then access it using their phones on “411 GET IT” SMS services. This helps farmers get a competitive range of market prices for their farm produce.
Youths, we have the brain and energy for learning and using these tools unlike the old forks whom we claim are hiding their cards below the table. We have and edge over them on ICT matters and so we can use it to reclaim our position in development.

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