Government has commended KCB Uganda and the German Development Cooperation (GIZ) for their shs6 billion Twekozese program that helps boost Uganda’s skills development agenda.
On Thursday, a total of 575 youths graduated from Datamine Business Institute and Ntinda Vocational Institute as part of these program.
The beneficiaries were skilled in masonry, carpentry, plumbing, welding and electric installation.
Speaking during the graduation ceremony at the UMA Multipurpose Hall in Kampala, Dr. Patrick Byakatonda, the head of the directorate of Industrial training in the Ministry of Education said such programs help complement government efforts in skilling its citizens.
“Government will continue to support such initiatives because they will lead to the social-economic transformation of our country. I commend KCB and GIZ for taking on and accomplishing this project that commenced in 2021. Your commitment to bettering the lives of Ugandans has been evidenced today with the graduation of the beneficiaries here today. I hope we can continue to have events such as these in the future,” Dr.Byakatonda said.
KCB Uganda Managing Director, Edgar Byamah hailed GIZ for accepting to partner with the bank to skill Ugandan youths.
“We are delighted to have partnered with GIZ to start the programme to empower the youth in Uganda with practical skills for employment and entrepreneurship. We believe that the skills and knowledge they have gained will enable them to make a positive impact in their communities and contribute to the growth of the Ugandan economy and transform their lives,” Byamah said.
The Twekozese program under KCB Foundation seeks to create self-employment and establish enterprises among unskilled and semi-skilled youth in Uganda.
The programme focuses on growing youth micro-businesses in the informal sector and bring them to a place where they can employ at least five other young people with an aim of creating 250,000 jobs over five years.
The KCB-GIZ programme was launched in July 2021 as part of efforts to increase the employability and
income generation of youth in the construction sector and both partners committed a combined shs
6 billion towards the Employment and Skills for Development in Africa (E4D) Programme that was commissioned by the German Federal Ministry for Economic Cooperation and Development (BMZ), co-funded by the Norwegian Agency for Development Cooperation (NORAD).
As a result, 2,165 youth enrolled for the programme and were up skilled in three cohorts administered by 13 vocational training institutions across Uganda.
Of the 2,165 beneficiaries, 32% are female and 5% are people living with disabilities.
GIZ E4D Uganda team leader, Donald Agaba, noted that this partnership seeks to promote employment by improving the skillset of youth working in the construction sector, in addition to providing them with toolkits to start their own businesses.
“This project is part of an integrated approach working on both the supply and demand sides of the labour market, through skills and enterprise development. On enterprise development, E4D works to boost competitiveness and growth of small and medium-sized businesses so they can enter lucrative supply and value chains and employ more youth along the way.”
GIZ Country Director, James Macbeth stated that under the private sector cooperation portfolio, GIZ engages in partnerships with the private sector in Uganda to foster innovation, close skill gaps in the labor market, and promote inclusive business models, among others.
“We have for example through E4D programme partnered KCB Bank to contribute towards reducing the skills gap in Uganda’s construction sector through demand- oriented and practical technical and vocational skills training.”