The European Union (EU) has given a non-governmental organisation in Dowa a grant of about 400,000 Euros (K320 million) to train young people.
“There is Hope”, a local NGO based at Dzaleka Refugee Camp in Dowa will use the money to support a capacity building project in vocational training of vulnerable Malawians and refugee youths of ages between 18 and 40 in the district.
The organization on Saturday organised activities aimed at bringing awareness on programs offered which took place at Chibwata primary school ground in the area of Traditional Authority Msakambewa in the district.
Speaking in an interview with Malawi24, “There is Hope’s” Director of Programs, Catherine Ndege Chirwa said with the grant, her organization will construct a girl’s hostel to encourage more girls enrol into a 2 year vocational skills training project targeting 360 youths which started in January, 2018 and is expected to end in December, 2019.
Chirwa said many girls had failed to enrol in the previous years because of lack of hostels to offer protection to the girls who usually suffer abuse in the absence of safe lodging places.
She expressed hope that once the girls hostels are constructed, they will provide protection to girls and encourage them to enrol into vocational skills training, a field that was once dominated by males.
The director said for the past years, her organization had been enrolling youths from Traditional Authorities Msakambewa and Mkukula only, but expressed hope that when the girls’ hostel is completed, youths from the remaining Traditional Authorities Mponela, Chiwere, Dzoole, Kayembe and Chakhaza left.
She said the institution had from January this year introduced plumbing and carpentry level II courses besides bricklaying and tailoring which it had been offering and expressed hope that after graduating, the youths will be able to support themselves.
There is Hope is a Christian Non-denominational denominational institution founded by Innocent Magambi, a Burundian born, who grew up in DRC and has lived in refugee camps for 27 years.
The Malawi government has also intensified its drive to help youths acquire vocational skills and has constructed many Community Technical Colleges across the country where youths are being trained in technical and vocational skills to help them become entrepreneurs.