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Youth Skilling Project

1.0 Background

SARD-Net in partnership with AVSI Foundation is implementing Skilling in Agripreneurship for Increased Youth Employment (SAY) Project with funding from the Embassy of Kingdom of Netherlands (EKN).

Skilling in Agripreneurship for Enhanced Youth Employment (SAY) project is a 50 months’ project (Nov 2020 to December 2024) focusing on developing competences of young people between 13 to 30 years to increase income opportunities, create jobs and business opportunities in the agri-business sector in an inclusive and sustainable manner.

This partnership will provide a combination of hands-on practical, technical, mentoring and entrepreneurial education, where the young people within the age bracket (aged 18–30 years) are expected to gain relevant sustainable employable skills and market-focused capacity building/knowledge.

The project will contribute to: Embassy of the Kingdom of the Netherlands 2019-2024 Multi Year Strategic Plan, Vision 2040 of Uganda, Uganda National Agriculture Policy 2013 and the BTVET 10-year Strategic Plan for Revolutionizing Skills Development in Uganda (Skilling Uganda Initiative) with a focus on youth.

Other than the main component of agricultural development and increased youth employment and in-come (500,000 UGX/month), the SAY project considers the importance of a trigger effect that can be developed by engaging the youth in entrepreneurship training and other soft skills, including exposing them to opportunities in agriculture through models that challenge their thinking and grow their business acumen so that they realize the potential that is saliently embedded within agribusiness.

2.0 Project Goal

The goal of the SAY project is to contribute to increased agri-skills level and gainful employment of youth in the agriculture sector in Uganda.

3.0 Specific Objectives

The specific objectives of the partnership are:

  • To provide 200 youth refugees and host community with adequate practical hands-on skills to improve their food security, and earn income to support self.
  • To promote/ strengthen entrepreneurial capabilities amongst the youth that enable them build a sounder economic base for better livelihood.
  • To support facility improvement to enhance provision of practical sustainable skills to the youth and host community.

4.0 Skilling Model/Business Case

For refugees besides food, there are many other basic needs that are hardly met due to reduced support from donors and unexpected challenges created by coronavirus epidemic. During the lockdown, food ration reduced by 40% and in January 2021 it was further reduced by 20 % which means for them to survive they have to be engaged in livelihood activities to supplement the support provided by the donors. For the youth, acquiring skills has become very crucial. Sustainable Agriculture for Rural Development Network (SARD-Net) will provide practical skills in occupation level 1 to the youth refugees and host communities and during the skilling an apprenticeship module called “EARN as You Learn” will be applied.

A total of 200 refugees and Host communities (100 host & 100 Refugees) will be supported to run their own enterprises through the Earn as You Learn Model. The project will expose all the 200 refugees and host communities to agribusiness activities through practical hands-on skills training mainly in the selected value chains. All the 200 youth refugees and host communities are to generate income as they learn through engaging in production, management and marketing of the products while collectively undergoing the training. 80% of the income from the sales will be given to them as startup capital and 20% will be retained by the skilling centre.

AVSI Foundation will lead and coordinate the SAY project, give grants and technical leadership to SARD-Net. SARD-Net will provide the venue and select 200 youth who will receive training in the different enterprises mentioned above. The organization will offer technical support in skills training to the youth, financial management of all the funds, monitoring and evaluation of the activities and will provide a valid assessment for the trained youth.

A youth practically being trained in Pest and Disease management
Lacwec omiyo youth group being skilled in transplanting onions in block 5 in Zone 2, Palabek refugee
settlement, Lamwo District, Uganda.
Dic Pe youth group weeding under their sukuma wiki garden in block 2, zone 3, Palabek refugee settlement, Lamwo District, Uganda.
Dic Pe youth group during their VSLA meeting in block 2, zone 3 in Palabek refugee settlement, Lamwo District, Uganda.