Maisha Mtaani Youth Group, Kisumu, Kenya.
World Youth Skills Day is celebrated on July 15th annually. It highlights the challenges faced in the labour market globally by young people, who are nearly three times as likely to be unemployed than adults.
The theme for World Youth Skills Day in 2023 is: ‘Skilling teachers, trainers and youth for a transformative future.’ The aim is to highlight the significant role that teachers, trainers and other educators play in providing skills for youth to transition to the labour market and to actively engage in their communities and societies.
Almost 60% of Africa’s population is under the age of 25, making the continent the youngest in the world. This brings both challenges as well as opportunities. But it’s vital that young people are supported in reaching their potential through training and education. We cannot protect the planet and feed its inhabitants in a sustainable way without the participation of young people so getting Africa’s youth on board for this is essential.
At Self Help Africa, we have several projects focusing on empowering young people to become successful agri entrepreneurs and contribute to their communities. Through our partnership with Designer Group, we are increasing informal and self-employment opportunities for youth in Kisumu County, Kenya, through training courses in welding, electrical installation, motor vehicle mechanics and more.
Most of the programme participants come from families with parents who couldn’t afford college for their children. Kevin Tzzadi Mttaki took a course in electrical installation. “I am now offering electrical services to the community and have three apprentices I am training. The programme has brought some light into my life.”
The benefits of the training goes beyond the programme participants too. Many of the students are sharing their new skills with others in their communities who may not be direct beneficiaries of the programme.
On World Youth Skills Day and every day, let’s recognise the importance of equipping young people with skills to build a brighter future for themselves, their families and their communities.