In this year’s World Youth Skills Day, we celebrate the resilience and creativity of youth throughout the COVID-19 pandemic. To young people in rural areas, providing technical and vocational education and training (TVET), such as drone and robot operation, can effectively help them maintain a decent job against poverty during the economic recovery.
UNESCO estimates that schools were either fully or partially closed for more than 30 weeks between March 2020 and May 2021 in half the countries of the world. In late June, 19 countries still had full school closures, affecting nearly 157 million learners. And 768 million more learners were affected by partial school closures.
Rural youth are one of the vulnerable groups of people who are highly affected by the pandemic. In many developing countries, their opportunities to obtain skills could easily be interrupted due to the yet-to-recover education and training system.
Our Story: Equipping Chilean Young Farmers with Drone Skills
Tecmundo staff and drone pilot trainees in offline field training (source: Tecmundo)
Since early 2021, Tecmundo as XAG global partner in Chile has started to provide drone training courses for local Chilean farmers who want to learn autonomous farming techniques.
This May, in order to minimise the impact of epidemic on technical education, as well as enabling more farmers to embrace autonomous equipment and start their agribusiness as soon as possible, Tecmundo transferred their theoretical courses online to provide an easier approach. Local young farmers can learn in-depth about how agricultural drones are used in different scenarios including field mapping, seeding and crop spraying.
Theoretical course provided to local young drone pilots (source: Tecmundo)
Opening their arms to students from the whole nation, Tecmundo's curriculums are conducted in full Spanish and are planned to reach out to more trainees from Spanish-speaking countries. So far, the online courses have trained over 20 XAG drone pilots with an average age of 20-40 who are keen to introduce new tech in rural areas to benefit local farmers.
In the upcoming farming season, Tecmundo is about to launch a new online course that will educate the young South American farmers on how to operate XAG’s drones for pest & disease control and how to repair and maintain the farm robots.
In collaboration with INIA (The Agricultural Research Institute of Chile), a public training programme on crop spraying is also being drafted to educate more civilians about the benefits of digital agriculture technologies.
Skills are the modern youth’s armour, and their power would become much more stronger once suiting up with technology.