Promoting employability of rural youth
MICAIA Foundation and our partner, the Dutch development NGO SNV, are launching a new 4-year project focused on enabling 7,500 young people to improve their livelihoods through employment and self-employment. The project, funded by the EU, starts officially on 1 March 2015, but in the first week of February MICAIA Foundation hosted an inception workshop with SNV and another collaborating organization, ADPP.
This is a really exciting but challenging project. We aim to build the skills, knowledge and confidence of 6,000 young people in the agricultural sector, and a further 1,500 working in non-timber forest products (honey, Baobab etc). The training elements will combine technical skills development with ‘soft skills’ such as communication, leadership etc. Of the 7,500 young people who enter the project, 1,000 will be selected for more advanced business skills training and will be encouraged to develop an idea for a small business. Some of those ideas (we target 100) will receive financial as well as business services support.
Given that the rural population is still at 65%+ nationally and more in the central region, that 8 times as many people leave education each year as there are new jobs created, projects such as this one are essential.