Youth unemployment in Kenya is estimated at almost 17%. Many times we think vocational training is the last resort to “help bring young people back” when the basic education system has failed, or as a top-up to the basic knowledge base young people will need, to help prepare them for the immediate needs of the labor market.
However, vocational training as a single intervention is likely to be insufficient to overcome a context of high levels of youth unemployment because of serious difficulties in integrating youth into the labor market, especially amongst early school leavers.
Opportunities to develop a specific set of skills that matches the needs of the job market are often limited. Even if young people finish school, they do not necessarily have the skills needed by employers.
With the emergence and change in technology, developing digital entrepreneurship and creating new job opportunities for young people is critical to Kenya’s and Africa as a whole transformative growth.
To counter this, Google announced on Tuesday that it is set to train about one million African youth, Kenyans included, on Digital entrepreneurship within the next 12 months.
These initiatives will see Kenyan youth trained on subjects ranging from content creation, digital strategy, web design, social media and app development.
The Google Country Manager Charles Murito, believes that everyone can succeed online, start a new business, grow their existing one, or share their passion if well equipped with digital skills.
The programs are divided into two parts namely; ‘Digify Bytes’ which will give digital skills to young people looking to develop a digital career; and ‘Digify Pro’ – a 3-month immersion programme for digital specialists.
You can access the online-learning portal at – digifyafrica.com – which is equipped with a range of digital skills tutorials and courses to help you through the training.
Youth unemployment remains a barrier to this country’s development. Young people need genuine education and skills training but crucially their ambitions need to be matched with opportunities.
It’s time for the Kenyan Youth to look at the online space as a source of income and not just gossip.