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Thursday, 23 June 2011 10:50

YoBloCo Awards: Write a blog on youth and agriculture and win up to 3,000 Euros!

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yobloco contest logoThe Technical Centre for Agricultural and Rural Cooperation ACP-EU (CTA), in collaboration with FARA, Yam-Pukri, CAFAN, AYF, ANAFE, SPC/PAFPNET is organizing the Youth in Agriculture Blog Competition (YoBloCo Awards). This contest is launched in the framework of the ARDYIS initiative which aims to raise youth awareness and improve their capacity on agricultural and rural development issues in ACP countries using  Information Technology.

  • To vote or comment on blogs, please check the links below:

Institutional blogs

Individual blogs

This blog competition aims to:

  • Put into limelight issues, successes and challenges faced by youth engaged in: agriculture in urban and rural areas;
  • Encourage the production of information and the use of new information technologies by young farmers’ groups and organizations interested in the “youth in agriculture” question;
  • Promote the sharing of information on the issues of agriculture and rural development in African, Caribbean and Pacific (ACP) countries.

This competition is also being launched in the framework of the commemoration of  the United Nations International Year of Youth.

1. Who can participate

The YoBloCo Awards are open in two categories, individual category and institutional category.

The “Individual category” is open to students in agricultural training courses, young farmers, journalists or other young people.

The “Institutional category” is open to local or national

  • young farmers’ organizations;
  • young members of farmers’ organizations;
  • young members of any organization interested in agriculture.

An organization is understood here as any type of non-profit or for-profit association, cooperative, forum, network or related grouping, excluding government institutions. Organizations that receive funding from governments but are not formal governmental institutions can be eligible if they fulfil all criteria.

If the organization or grouping submitting an entry is not officially registered in the country, it should be recommended, via a letter of recommendation, by a national partner organization which is officially registered.

When young members of an organization submit an entry in the “Institutional category”, they apply on behalf of their organization. If the entry wins an award, it’s the organization which will be declared winner and will receive the cash prize. The blog creator or a representative of blog creators (if it’s a team) will be invited for the prize giving ceremony and receive a trophy on behalf of the winning organization. When a team applies on behalf of their organization, the person representing the team must be specified in the application process. The cash prize won would be sent to the organization.

For both categories, the young people participating must be between 18 to 35 years old (by 31 December 2011) and be nationals of ACP countries signatories of the Cotonou Agreement (see Note 1 below).

2. How to participate

Blogs and all required documents should be submitted via an online form (the link will be provided on this page from 31 July 2011). Entrants must clearly indicate the category for which the entry is submitted.

In addition:

For the Individual category, entrants must submit the following documents:

a. A Profile Document (2 pages maximum) including

i.A short biographical note to introduce the applicant, which includes his/her full contact details (email address, telephone number(s), address, town, country, etc.);

ii.A summary of the blog’s objectives and content

b. A scanned copy of an identification document indicating the date of birth of the applicant.

For the “Institutional category” the following documents must be submitted, depending on the category:

A/ Registered organization

a) A Profile Document (2 to 3 pages maximum) describing the entrant’s organization which must contain:

i.On top of the first page, the mention “Registered organization”;

ii.A presentation of the mission and activities of the organization;

iii.Full identity, function(s), occupation and contact details (email address, telephone number(s), address, country, etc.), of the member(s) of the organization who have created/animated the blog;

iv.Name of the person representing the author(s)/animator(s) of the blog;

v.Full contact details of the organization (email address, website if any, telephone number(s), postal address, country, etc.);

vi.Name and contact details (email address, telephone number(s), address, country etc.) of the legal representative of the organization;

vii.Names and contact details of 2 to 3 partner institutions of the organization.

b) Copy of the certificate of registration or adequate legal references of the organization;

c) A scanned copy of an identification document mentioning the date of birth the author/animator of the blog (maximum two identification documents if it’s a team);

d) A summary of the blog’s objectives and contents (one page maximum).


B/ Non-registered organization

If the organization submitting the entry is not officially registered, the following documents should be submitted:

a) The 2 to 3 page Profile Document as described above for the organization –  But on top of the first page “Non-Registered Organization” must be mentioned

b) a letter of recommendation from one national partner organization

c) A document presenting the recommending organization : core activities, full contact details;

d) Copy of the Certificate of registration or adequate legal references of the recommending organization;

e) A summary of the blog’s objectives and content (one page maximum)

f) A scanned copy of an identification document mentioning the date of birth of each author/animator of the blog (maximum two identification documents if it’s a team)

Organizations (notably farmers’ associations) are free to request local assistance (if needed) for the technical design of the blog (see note 2 below). If required, an acknowledgement can be inserted on the blog to give some visibility to that partner.


3. Content of eligible blogs

The blog submitted can be a newly created one, or one that already exists but which has been recently updated with content related to agriculture.  However mainly blog posts from the commencement of the competition will be judged.

A blog that deals with, or contains posts/articles on other subjects than agriculture must include, consistently (see Note 3 below), new articles related to agriculture, in order to be considered eligible.  “New articles” or “new posts” means here texts published between the launch of competition until its closure (please check section 7 below for the deadline). If necessary, the entrant can explain why she/he/they think the blog is relevant and/or submit the list and links of new agriculture related posts. Posts/articles considered for the competition must be in French or English and can be related to one or several ACP countries.

Articles on the blog will cover themes or issues such as:

  • Challenges, success and issues faced by Youth in agriculture and related activities
  • Climate change, environmental conservation, natural resource management
  • Agri-business (marketing, commercialization, processing, etc.)
  • Agricultural production
  • Agriculture value chains and agricultural policy
  • ICT use in the agricultural sector (how can ICTs promote agriculture or how can ICT support innovation in agricultural value chains, ICT and agriculture policies, etc.)
  • How are ICTs improving (or can improve) youth opportunities in rural areas
  • Actions, policies and strategies related to youth involvement in agriculture
  • Food security
  • Agro-tourism
  • Any other agriculture related theme or issue;
  • Dialogue and mutual understanding among youth and other stakeholders in rural areas (see Note 4 below).

4. Selection process

We have two different processes for the two categories.

  • Click here to vote for your best blogs in the Individual Category. 15 finalists will be selected basing on the number of votes they will receive, and they will be finally evaluated by an independent jury composed of expert in the field of ICTs and Agriculture.  The first prize for this category is 1500 Euros and other prizes will be awarded!
  • You can comment on the blogs of the Institutional Category, by going directly here: the jury will choose the best blogs per region for this category and will take into account comments made by the public. The prize for this category is 3,000 Euros per winning organization. In addition, some of the most appreciated blogs by the public will receive special rewards from organizers if they are not selected by the jury.

You can also share with us your thoughts and suggestions on this competition and on issues around the youth in agriculture and ICTs here.

Updates about the whole voting process and results will be shared regularly on the YoBloCo Blog.
Votes and comments on blogs will end on December 31, 2011.

5. Selection criteria

The main selection criteria are the following:

  • Quality of language in posts
  • Originality of posts/articles (most posts should be written by the entrant)
  • Quality of analysis in the posts
  • Frequency/Consistency of blogging
  • Animation of the blog
  • Presence of agriculture related content (especially since the launch of the contest for existing blogs)
  • Overall technical quality of the blog

For the institutional category, additional criteria are:

  • Presence of information on the organization’s activities;
  • Presence of information in youth in agriculture issues.

6. Prizes

For the “Individual category”: three prizes will be awarded, considering the whole ACP region

- First prize : 1,500 Euros

- Second Prize : 1,000 Euros

- Third Prize : 800 Euros

For the “Institutional category”, regional prizes will be awarded, one for each of the six ACP regions (West Africa, Central Africa, Southern Africa, East Africa, Pacific and Caribbean). Each regional winner will receive a cash prize of 3,000 Euros. In addition, the best runner-up in each region will receive other rewards from CTA.

Winning blogs and other best blogs will be promoted by CTA and its partners’ various channels.  In addition, authors of winning blog or other best blogs will have the opportunity to be involved in future activities of CTA or of its partners.

7. Deadline and key dates

The deadline for submission of entries is 31 October 2011 at 6 PM GMT.  The winners will be announced in February 2012. The date of the prize giving ceremony will be announced subsequently.In addition, some best blog authors will have the opportunity to be involved in our future activities.

8. Additional terms and rules

a. The organizers reserve the right to reject any application that does not meet the contest criteria and the present regulations.

b. Participation in the competition implies an explicit agreement given to the CTA to make public, as needed, the experiences described, as well as participant’s identity. Moreover, it constitutes an agreement given to the CTA to use the experiences described in its publications and for promotional activities.

c. CTA will not return to the participants documents submitted.

d. By entering, participants warrant that content on the blog does not infringe on any third party's rights.

e. All local taxes on prizes, if required, are the sole responsibility of the winners.

f. If, for any reason, the contest cannot be conducted as planned, the CTA reserves the right, at its sole discretion, to cancel, close, change, or suspend it;

g. Youths directly working for CTA or ARDYIS advisory Committee organizations are not eligible to participate. However young people working for partners of these organizations are eligible:

h. Applicants will be informed about the competition results by email to the addresses provided in the application form

i. Apart from the public result announcement, each winner will be notified through the e-mail address he/she provided. A reminder will be sent if necessary. In case of non response to the reminder message and 10 days maximum after the result announcement, the next best candidate in the same category will be declared winner;

j. Decisions taken by the jury and the CTA are final and are beyond dispute;

k. All contest participants implicitly accept the rules presented in this document.

9. Contact

Feel free to contact us if you have any question or if you want to join the ARDYIS project discussion list to exchange/receive information about youth, ICT and agriculture.

ARDYIS project/ICT4D Programme

Technical Centre for Agricultural and Rural Cooperation ACP-EU (CTA)

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Telephone: +31 (0)317 467 100



Note 1: The ACP countries targeted here are those that have signed the ACP-EU Cotonou Agreement : Angola - Antigua and Barbuda - Belize - Cape Verde - Comoros - Bahamas - Barbados - Benin - Botswana - Burkina Faso - Burundi - Cameroon – Chad -  Central African Republic - Congo (Brazzaville) - Congo (Kinshasa) - Cook Islands – Côte d’Ivoire - Cuba - Djibouti – Dominican Republic - Dominica - East Timor - Equatorial Guinea - Eritrea - Ethiopia - Fiji - Gabon – The Gambia - Ghana - Grenada –Guinea - Guinea-Bissau  - Guyana - Haiti – Jamaica - Kenya - Kiribati - Lesotho - Liberia - Madagascar - Malawi - Mali – Marshall Islands - Mauritius - Mauritania – Federated States of Micronesia - Mozambique - Namibia - Nauru - Niger - Nigeria - Niue - Uganda - Palau - Papua New Guinea - Rwanda - Saint Christopher and Nevis - Saint Vincent and Grenadines - Saint Lucia - Solomon Islands - Samoa - São Tomé and Principe - Senegal - Seychelles - Sierra Leone - Somalia - South Africa - Sudan - Suriname - Swaziland - Tanzania - Togo - Tonga - Trinidad and Tobago - Tuvalu - Vanuatu - Zambia - Zimbabwe

Note 2: The main elements that will be evaluated are the blog animation and content.

Note 3: To be evaluated by selection committees.

Note 4: This theme is designed directly along the core theme of the UN International Year of Youth.

More about the ARDYIS project:

The purpose of the ARDYIS (Agriculture, Rural Development and Youth in the Information Society) project is to raise youth awareness and improve their capacity on agricultural and rural development issues in ACP countries using ICTs. The Advisory Committee for the project is made of the following institutions: Forum for Agricultural Research in Africa (FARA), African Network for Agriculture, Agroforestry and Natural Resources Education (ANAFE), Pacific Agriculture and Forestry Policy Network (PAFPNet), Caribbean farmers’ Network (CAFAN), Yam-Pukri association, African Youth Foundation (AYF). ARDYIS activities will contribute to the promotion of opportunities for youth in ACP countries in the agricultural, rural development and ICT sectors.

Last modified on Wednesday, 20 June 2012 12:48


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