Fresh Graduates get Work Readiness Training.

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Uganda has one of the youngest populations globally. Each year, up to 800,000 Ugandans join the job market. These include some 100,000 fresh graduates from Universities and other institutions of higher learning.

Unfortunately, the job market only absorbs a small percentage of these with the rest having to either create their own jobs or remain unemployed.

Even worse is the fact that many of those employed, lack the necessary real work environment skills, their qualifications notwithstanding. This is largely because of theory education, and limited practical studies offered by the old syllabus.

In a move to address this skills gap, Enabel and Private Sector Foundation Uganda (PSFU) with support from the Mastercard Foundation are implementing the Work Readiness Program to specially enhance employability and productivity of young graduates from universities and other institutions of higher learning.

The Work Readiness Program (WRP) supports recent university graduates to acquire practical work experience and boost soft skills through attachments to jobs in the sectors of Manufacturing, Agro-processing, Construction, Tourism and ICT for six paid months.

Under this six months’ arrangement, the Word Readiness Program pays 80 per cent of the selected graduate’s salary while the organization the graduate is working for pays the 20 per cent. 

The program that is being implemented together with over 30 organizations in the sectors of Manufacturing, Agro-processing, Construction, Tourism and ICT has already benefited some 500 fresh graduates.

According to Betty Twesiime, the Graduate Relations Officer Under The Work Readiness Program at PSFU, this program is open to citizens and residents of Uganda who graduated from a University with a transcript or evidence of processing one. The eligible candidates must have completed or graduated not more than 2 years from date of application, seeking work in one of the targeted sectors (Agro Processing, Construction, ICT, Manufacturing, Tourism & Hospitality) and willing to commit to a 6-month work readiness programme.

“There are no charges paid for attending the interview or for joining, if selected. The shortlisted candidates will have to appear for an interview at a venue that will be communicated. The award of a placement does not confer on the candidates any right for absorption in the host companies under any circumstances,” she said, adding;

“Candidates will be required to produce original of all certificates/testimonials and any other relevant certificate, community certificate, if applicable, during the interview. Female graduates in male dominated trades in these sectors are encouraged to apply.”

The Work Readiness Program adds to a list of other initiatives that PSFU is implementing under the Lead Firm Structure (LFS) Program.

Since its launch in 2019, the LFS project has so far mobilized 137,077 Ugandan Youth and managed to transit over 100,000 Youth into meaningful and dignified work, whilst targeting to create at least 300,000 jobs by 2025.