Farmers in the Senegalese village of Keur Madaro are producing more crops with the innovative Super Vegetable Garden program
Farmers in the Senegalese village of Keur Madaro are producing more crops with the innovative Super Vegetable Garden program

The right to food is one of the international human rights requirements. Yet, food security in Sub-Saharan Africa has always been a problem.

Now, the U.S. National Peace Corps Association, in conjunction with the World Policy Journal, is asking for your suggestions on how to achieve food security in rural Africa.

The group has launched an essay contest where participants will describe their ideas to African governments and private organizations about how to improve food security in rural Africa.

Kevin Quigley, president of the National Peace Corps Association, an organization of former Peace Corps volunteers, said the main purpose of the contest is to generate ideas that will help farmers in Africa.

?We found out that many of the best ideas out there are coming from people who live closest to the soil, who have the most direct experience with African agriculture. So, we started this Website called ?Africa Rural Connect? as an online rural community, people who care about Africa who were connected to African agriculture and who had some ideas of how African agriculture can be improved. And, we thought that a good way to extend that conversation about how to improve African agriculture was to do this essay contest,? he said.

Map of Africa
Map of Africa

Quigley said the National Peace Corps Association launched the essay contest on June 1 along with the World Policy Journal.

He said anybody who cares about Africa can enter the contest.

?The contest is open to all individuals who participate in our activities and anybody anywhere in the world who has got some ideas about how to improve agriculture,? he said.

Quigley said the essays would be judged by a panel of judges, including David A. Andelman, editor of World Policy Journal and Emmy Simmons, former assistant administrator for the U.S. Agency for International Development, whom Quigley described as an independent consultant.

?We have a panel of distinguished judges who will select the essay that they think will make the most important, most unique contribution to improving African agriculture,? Quigley said.

He said the 800 to1200-word essay should be written in English using Associated Press style.

?We ask that all submissions be in the form of a Word document attachment, and they can submit them by email to by 11:59 p.m. Eastern Standard Time on 31 July of this year. And, we will announce the winner of the contest by 31 August, 2010,? Quigley said

He said there will be no monetary award for the winner, but the winning essay would be widely publicized.

?There is no monetary award, but the winner will have their essay in the World Policy Journal that?s read by more than 50,000 individuals, and their essay would be put on the World Policy Journal and the Peace Connect Websites,? Quigley said.