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Kyenjojo leaders appreciate JESE, partners for SkillUp Project

Kyenjojo leaders appreciate JESE, partners for SkillUp Project

Leaders in Kyenjojo district have appreciated the Joint Effort to Save the Environment (JESE) and the partners for the SkillUp project, which has equipped the youth with technical skills in hairdressing, motorcycle and motor vehicle mechanics, wielding and carpentry.

The leaders made the remark during the graduation ceremony of 57 youth at Tropical Gardens in Kyenjojo town council, Kyenjojo district on Tuesday. The youth were assessed by the Directorate of Industrial Training (DIT) which also awarded them certificates.

The Deputy Resident District Commissioner, Allan Bamuha, said the SkillUp project by JESE and its partner, Welthungerhilfe, has now contributed to the government’s effort of fighting youth unemployment, and is optimistic that those who were trained will pass on the skills to other youth and also create jobs in the long run.

Bamuha, however, advised them to adopt a culture of saving and avoid unnecessary expenses on things like betting, parties and alcohol if they want to develop.

“Now all your relatives are going to look up to you. All the money you will be making will now be going to supporting your siblings. Before you know it, you will be required to send condolences to families that lose loved ones. Parties will also come in! Please, you need to understand that that you need to save money. You can never solve all the challenges in the world,” Bamuha advised.

For his part, the Kyenjojo District LCV chairperson, Gilbert Rubaihayo, thanked NGOs like JESE for doing tangible work in his district, adding that youth unemployment was becoming a serious challenge that was forcing some into drug abuse, encroachment on forests to do charcoal burning and others crimes.

He advised other youth who have skills but lack money to embrace government programmes like Parish Development Model (PDM) and Emyooga to get a starting capital.

“JESE and Weltihunger have done their part. I urge you to now go and work so hard, well knowing that there is nothing good in this world like hardworking while still young. Know that if you don’t work hard, you will have serious problems in your future,” Rubaihayo said.

The head of Youth Skills Development Programme at JESE, George Kaihura, said as an organization, they deemed it necessary give vacational skills to the youth who were out of school and at the same time unemployed.

Kaihura said they believe it will help tackle the problem of scarcity of jobs by giving the trained youth a source of income which in turn will enable them live a decent life. 

Benjamin Kennedy, the Skillup Project Manager at Welthungerhilfe, congratulated the trainees upon the successful completion of the training. He, however, asked them to protect their lives against the many diseases including HIV and Ebola which have claimed many lives in the country.

He also encouraged them to be innovative, saying it is the only way to earn a better income and live a happy life.

“You diversify. Add on what you have studied. Be creative so that you can have multiple sources of income and have happy families. You are still energetic knowledgeable,” Benjamin said.

He also asked the youth to jealously protect the environment while referring to Module 6 of the Life Skills Manual titled, Nature Conservation and Climate Action, which talks about climate change resilience and environmental conservation.

“You have studied all these things in Life Skill [which was part of the training]. Take them serious, reflect on them, remember them so that they can be useful to you and the country at large,” Benjamin added.

On their part, the trainees could not hide their excitement. They promised to use their skills to create income generatign businesses that will improve on their incomes. 

Bridget Kobusinge, the only female youth who opted for motor vehicle mechanics, said she chose the trade bcause she has always wanted to be a mechanic. She said she is hopeful that with the skills she aquired, her livelihood will greatly improve.

"i dropped out of school from Primary Seven and I have been struggling to make ends meet.  I will use my skill to ensure that my future is bright. I thank JESE so much for the skills I have today," Kobusinge said.

Natukunda Patience said her father died when she was four years old and her mother died when she was 12 years. She added that life got so hard for her and she was forced to get married at an early age but still, due to domestic violence, she was forced out and rendered very helpless. She thanks the SkillUp project for the skills she acquired from toilering.

"I'm now hopeful that I will now be able to educate my three children, buy a house where shall stay and ensure they do not suffer like I have suffered. I thank JESE for enabling me to reach here, I will forever be grateful," she said. 


Kaihura said that the youth who were trained under the Skillup project were picked after a through process and it is the most deserving who were given the opportunity. He explained that an announcement was sent out via radios and local leaders were also contacted to help reach the call to the ground.

After this, those who were interested applied for the opportunity and a team was set up to carefully scrutinize the applications. This process was followed by interviews where emphasis was being put on the most underprivileged. In the whole process, district leaders including LCV, LC1s and Community Development Officers were all involved.


In skillUp, all the beneficiaries are vulnerable and financially constrained to meet costs like transport, accommodation and such other expenses. It is against this background that a unique approach was employed for the project.

The approach works in such a way that trainees are given to qualified trainers who are close to them in terms of distance, where they can walk to and return to their homes. This in a way solves issues and worries around transport costs and any other expenses that would be incurred if the traditional approach of using technical schools was employed.

Additionally, the trainees are given life skills that include personal development, community and leadership, healthy living, inclusiveness and belonging and enhancing employability. At the end of the training, Kaihura said, the youth will be complete with both life and vocational skills.

“We also give them a startup kit that includes some tools to enable them start to work right away,” he added.  

The SkillUp project in Tooro Subregion is being implemented in the districts of Kyenjojo Bunyangabu and Fort Portal Tourism City by JESE in partnership with Welthungerhilfe with support from BMZ - the Federal Ministry for Economic Cooperation and Development in Germany. 




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