Time for youth to shine
SNV's CEO Allert van den Ham and the Ministry's Permanent Secretary, Mbabazi Rosemary went to Musanze district in Rwanda, where they visited Opportunities for Youth Employment (OYE) project sites to assess the impact of SNV’s employment related work at the grassroots.
Permanent Secretary Mbabazi observed and commended OYE’s conscious effort to protect the environment and create sustainable jobs to empower youth with better opportunities. She expressed hope that the OYE youth will be relevant to the renewable energy sectors although it was up to them to seize the training opportunities and strive to be the best in their work.
The OYE project leader in Rwanda, Anaclet Ndahimana said that the program is providing the youth with useful knowledge/skills, and matching the skills they receive to various companies that are already working in these sectors.
The SNV delegation visited a biogas project owned and run by an OYE trainee. Eugenie Mujyewamaria, who is making up to 1,000,000 Rwandan Franc (equivalent to 1250 USD) per month and has so far built 224 digesters with the help of 124 fellow OYE biogas trainees who work for her. The entrepreneur encouraged other youth, especially women, to be diligent, and not to shy off technical jobs that can uplift their lives.
One solar trainee, Sibomana Emmanuel - who is in the Mobisol solar programme under OYE, said he is grateful to have received training that is earning him a steady income every month. He sells Mobisol home solar systems and earns commissions. He is saving his income after having bought a piece of land worth 2million francs. He no longer fears what the future holds because he is financially secure.
The delegation also visited a biogas training site where trainees are learning to install plastic digesters that could be more affordable for more households than the concrete digesters currently in the market.
The OYE programme in Rwanda also featured on a television segment sponsored by the Ministry of Youth and ICT on Rwanda’s national TV titled "Isaha y’urubwiruko" (The Youth Hour).