Yes, Youth Can
Mercy Corps (USAID)
Economic opportunities for Kenyan youth are limited by their lack of relevant entrepreneurship and life skills. This is often a result of outdated curricula and training delivery systems local organizations use to build these skills in local youth.
Making Cents International strengthened the capacity of youth organizations in Rift Valley and Central Province to provide relevant entrepreneurship and life-skills training, including in areas such as communication, job performance, presentation, negotiation, and timeliness.
We began by conducting a local capacity assessment that gathered data on specific learning needs of youth, current training programs, and constraints relating to training delivery and youth engagement in the local economy. The assessment incorporated site visits, one-on-one interviews, focus group discussions, and sampling of our curriculum materials for youth. Based on this assessment findings as well as on market assessments in two provinces, we adapted our curriculum, Rise Up, Lift Yourself with Business and Life Skills.
After piloting the curriculum package, we developed and delivered a training-of-trainers (TOT) course in each region. Members of the targeted youth organizations first completed basic life-skills training before they were eligible for the business skills and entrepreneurship trainings that we tailored to each location. They also needed to demonstrate aptitude, motivation, and potential to be enrolled in these trainings. They became Youth Ambassadors or “Bright Spots” who facilitated the sustained use of the entire curriculum package within their youth organizations. Over the course of the project, the curriculum reached 7,500 youth in Rift Valley and 2,500 youth in Central Province.