In the marginalized areas of Pumwani the youth are vulnerable, they lack access to education and training and hence most of them are not involved in gainful employment. Consequently, the youth are susceptible to social evils such as crime and substance abuse. The youth programme has been implementing projects aimed at holistic development of the youth, in and out of school, to ensure they become reliable members of the society and contribute constructively to nation development.
The youth programme is contributing to strategic objective two where it is supposed to reach out to 60,000 youths implementing strategies that will ensure the youth access education and training, talent development ,economic empowerment, positive behavior transformation , health information, awareness on their rights and psycho-social support.
SJCC has been implementing its 5th strategic plan 2009-2014. The youth program has been addressing our 2nd strategic focus area of youth development through making education and training accessible.
The program planned to reach 2000 vulnerable youth in order to Improve their opportunities to access education, skills training, economic empowerment, health information, awareness on their rights and psycho-social support. We are at the end of the strategic period and the program was able to surpass the set target by reaching over 4000 youths and 6 environment management groups.
- The program has managed to train youth in business management, project management skills and life skills. All the youths who participated in this process are gainfully employed in group or individual business. The youth are earning decent income and have gained recognition and respect in the community
- Over 70% of the youth who have accessed vocational training through apprenticeship are either employed or self employed. Hence, the interventions implemented have helped in increasing opportunities for the youth enabling them to lead decent lives.
- 164 youth have been able to access secondary school education and from this group some are in colleges. Support for secondary education is acting as incentive for children in primary schools to improve their performance while the parents and guardians are increasingly supporting their children who are in secondary schools.
- Capacity of the youth in leadership and governance has been enhanced and as a result they are involved in leadership at all levels. Indeed five contested as ward representative during the last general election and one was elected. It’s hoped that increased inclusion of the youth in leadership positions will ensure challenges affecting people from this informal settlements are addressed.
- Youth led community structures such as: income generating groups, management of sanitation facilities, talent clubs, peer educators clubs, coffee bar forums and Pumwani Youth Groups are providing platforms to champion for positive behaviour change and for youths to articulate and discuss issues that affect them. It’s noted that some of these groups have evolved into strong community based organisations and are addressing the needs of the members as well as those of community e.g. Uprising Youth Group.
- The programme has reached out to about 1000 youths with life skills and mentoring that has enhanced their self esteem , acquired essential soft skills, be responsible of their sexuality and to positively contribute to a better society. For instance some have abandoned crime and others have shown commitment to change their communities through initiatives such as: environmental clean-ups, supporting children in homework clubs and facilitating life skills sessions. This is great achievement in a society where the youth are exposed to a myriad of social evils
- Through linkages created by the program, about 300 youth have been supported to access funding for their enterprises and for community projects. Two groups acquired funding from CDTF (Angola youth group) and CDF (Upraising group) for community projects. Linkages have been created with other organisations to support members from the community structures on technical skills in business and talents development.
THE STORY OF WINSTONE NANJESO AND THE UPRISING YOUTH GROUP
Mr. Winstone Nanjeso is the former Chairman of Uprising Youth Group, a position he held for 5 years. The 30 years old joined Uprising Youth Group as a teenager in year 2000 and has seen the group grow over the years. Winstone attributes the success of his group and its members to good planning, self sacrifice and determination. He notes that through the interventions by St. John’s Community Centre through its capacity building and economic empowerment programs, his group has grown beyond their imagination.
Uprising Youth group was established in the year 2000 by 25 unemployed youth whose common goal was to reduce idleness and fight poverty in Mashimoni village, Majengo slums. Mashimoni had for a long time been known as a haven for hardcore criminals, drug peddling and abuse, prostitution and petty thieves thus had been blacklisted by the administration. Prior to the establishment of the group, many youths had been gunned down by the police and conflicts between the police and youth were a common sight. Most of the founder members of the group are reformed criminals who are out to challenge a culture of careless living and crime that has been entrenched in the lifestyle of the youth. The group was formally registered with the department of Social Services in 2005. Currently, the group has a membership of 30 running the following projects; Car wash Services, Public service transport business (the group owns a 14 seater vehicle), Garbage collection, Hot shower, Video store and Poultry farming.
Currently the group is putting up a storey building part of which will be rented for income and part of it will be a hall and resource centre for use by children and other community members
The long term partnership with Kindernothilfe has enabled SJCC positively impact on not just hundreds of youth but thousands. Our beneficiaries will forever be grateful for your support in realizing dignified lives.May God bless you.
• NORWEGIAN CHURCH AID
As a result of your support, young people have been given a platform for exchange of knowledge, opportunities and skills. This has made them to be people of influence and those who cause positive change in their communities
• DRAMMEN UPPER SECONDARY SCHOOL
DRAMMEN VIDEREGÅENDE SKOLE
Due to your support, over 130 youth have been able to access secondary school education thus guaranteeing them bright futures. Tusen Takk!
Much appreciation to you TEARFUND and your friends for trusting us with resources that holistically transformed our youth. May your boundaries be expanded by God.