Vision: Creating Youth Millionaires
AEI is committed to making a change for the youth by helping them acquire the much needed employability and entrepreneurial skills to be competent in today’s world of work and solve their problems through taking lead in building themselves collectively as a team towards sustainable change.
In addition, AEI is also committed at introducing and running an entrepreneurship and mentorship program that will be integrated into the overall core functions of AEI.
AEI is aware that Africa faces a pressing problem of youth unemployment, which is worsening each year. Statistics from a 2017 UN report show that 37 per cent of the working-age population in Africa is made up of the youth, 60 per cent of which are unemployed.
In Kenya, the youth population is nearly 10 million; which is more than 20 per cent of the overall population. In addition to experiencing a so-called youth bulge; where at least 20 per cent of a country’s population is between the ages of 15 to 24 years the unemployment rates seem to be increasing rather than reducing e.g the unemployment figures according to ILO stood at 19.8% in 1991 but rose to 26.2% according to 2018 figures.
This calls for the need to take action to respond to the need by putting in place programmes to address the problem and hence our ImarishaUjuzi Initiative.
Skills have become increasingly important in the globalized world. Vocational and technical skills are essential, but employers are seeking applicants with more. They want employees who can continue to learn and adapt; read, write and compute competently; listen and communicate effectively; think creatively; solve problems independently; manage themselves at work; interact with co-workers; work in teams or groups; handle basic technology, lead effectively as well as follow supervision. These core skills for employability are both important to employers’ recruitment and enhance an individual’s ability to secure a job, retain employment and move flexibly in the labour market as well as engage in lifelong learning. AEI will bring this to the attention of the youth and help them to be more prepared for the world of work AEI further believes that employability entails much more than the ability to get that first job. To them it is having the capacity to network and market oneself, navigate through a career and remain employable throughout life. They believe that the youth need to develop the ability to ask questions, acquire new skills, identify and evaluate options, understand rights at work including the right to a safe and healthy work environment, adapt successfully to changing situations and have the courage to innovate.
The statistics in Kenya show that if no concerted is taken, then the values of dignity, love, equality and justice will not be realized in the near future and that is why we as AEI through our ImarishaUjuzi Initiative offer to train Kenyan high school graduates between ages 17 to 23 years, on employable skills and then place them as interns in organizations of interest for a period of not less than 6 months.The internship will provide an opportunity to promote the acquisition of soft skills as these cannot be learned from a book and require experiential, active learning opportunities from industries. The skills development will expose the youth to new ideas, behaviour and learning. AEI is aware that these requires appropriate levels of challenge, practice and feedback and it is the reason that we shall provide a camp as a forum for reports. Each intern will be assigned a mentor to provide support and guidance as they explore their competencies and interests.
As they acquire the necessary skills they will also be required to give back to the society.
The entry point to any society is the school and that is why as AEI we shall require that these youth learn to spread the skills they learn through volunteering in schools. This is special to us as it will inspire more learners to acquiring skills that are critical to their active participation in learning. It will invoke the social aspect and mentoring so that more learners take part through active learning and hence contributing towards poverty reduction and better living standards. It will contribute to skill sharing and helping more learners to build confidence and hence achieve a sense of pride.
Apart from employability skills, AEI also appreciates that S.M.Es are the main drivers of economic development that will is one of the solutions to the problem of employment. In particular, key economic sectors have proved to be the most viable in terms of employment creation and wealth creation, such as retail trade, Agriculture, Manufacturing, I.C.T and others. With adequate entrepreneurship training, incubation and support, more youths will be in a position of venturing into small businesses that will have the potential of impact majorly through employment creation.