Do you remember as a child being asked the age-old question: What do you want to be when you grow up? We distinctively had different answers. The constant feedback from our mentors and educators is you can be whatever you want to be.
On 15th July 2019, Connect Coffee Roasters and its community celebrated the World Youth Skills Day, while taking the opportunity to raise awareness on the importance of teaching young people a wide range of skills.
The coffee sub-sector is a field of study that has yet to be fully explored in Kenya. As a social enterprise, Connect Coffee Company offers regular coffee classes and Eco- farm tours training, in its aim to sensitize the youth on sustainable coffee consumption by tracking the origin and key processes in the coffee supply chain.
Connect Coffee also provides internship programs. This empowers the youth through the development of essential life-skills through a hands-on– and innovative way to do it. In the process, those youths gain not only entrepreneurial skills but also develop essential life skills such as teamwork, creativity, and leadership. These are the skills that will prepare them for the world of work.
There is pro-activity in other parts of the private sector, where companies are adopting mentorship programs that integrate on-the-job training and lifelong learning, which will go a long way in reshaping the thinking around youth employment.
In Kenya, the Technical and Vocational Education Training TVET ACT 2013 was designed to address the job skills issue and, more so, to ensure an increased and sustained enrollment ratio of 20% by the year 2030. This is a ground-breaking move on then, part of the government to revamp our entire education system with a view of making the lives of our youth better.
In Swahili, there is a saying which states” Wazee huota, vijana hutabiri” meaning it’s the work of the old to have a vision and for the youth to initiate and drive the vision forward.
Whether the story is of a trained farmer, barista, mechanic, a water technician, or an entrepreneur, tell us how your skills have been put into practice.