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Skills training prepared Kenyan youth for rewarding careers

July 19, 2017 —

In Kenya, nearly 19 percent of the population is 15 to 24 years of age, and the unemployment rate for this age group is more than 22 percent. FHI 360’s APHIAplus Nuru ya Bonde project responded to this situation by helping to prepare young people with workplace skills so that they can transition more easily from school to the workforce.

Hadija Abdi and Lorna Awuor receive their graduation certificate from Digital Opportunity Trust’s entrepreneurship training program.One focus of the APHIAplus Nuru ya Bonde project was supporting more than 78,000 orphans and vulnerable children in five counties. FHI 360 provided nutrition counseling; payment for school fees, levies and uniforms; HIV testing, counseling and treatment; guidance on obtaining birth certificates; and other age-related services. The project also supported these households through economic initiatives, such as participation in internal lending communities, an approach that encourages people to save and borrow money to support their needs.

APHIAplus Nuru ya Bonde staff created additional opportunities for participants in the orphans and vulnerable children program after their primary schooling completed. With funding from the U.S. Agency for International Development (USAID), staff worked with partners, such as the Digital Opportunity Trust and vocational colleges, to provide scholarships for workplace skills. To enable the candidates to become more self-reliant after their training, select candidates were given startup kits tailored to their individual needs. The startup kits could include monetary support, job-specific tools or contacts for entry-level positions.

Hadija Abdi and Lorna Awuor participated in the scholarship program and recently graduated from Digital Opportunity Trust’s entrepreneurship training program. Their courses focused on entrepreneurial startup and information technology skills.

Caleb Jairo Matindi, also in this program, received a scholarship for a mechanics course at a local vocational college. After graduation, Jairo got an apprenticeship and now has a job at a garage near his home. The program also provided Jairo with a startup toolkit for his new job. He plans to own his own garage one day and employ youth from his community.

FHI 360 has provided an average of 200 students every year with vocational training scholarships through the APHIAplus Nuru ya Bonde project. These efforts helped young people on their career paths and reduced the country’s youth unemployment rate.


Photo caption: Hadija Abdi and Lorna Awuor receive their graduation certificate from Digital Opportunity Trust’s entrepreneurship training program.

Photo credit: Victor Gitonga/FHI 360