The Rockefeller Foundation Africa today extended a Ksh100 million grant in aid of the Ajira Digital Programme of the Ministry of Information, Communication and Technology.
The grant extended through the implementing partners, Kenya Private Sector Alliance (KEPSA) will go towards the training of 10,000 youth and apprentices on how to seek and get online jobs.
While making the announcement at the ongoing Connected Summit 2017, Joe Mucheru, the Cabinet Secretary Ministry of ICT said the ministry’s objective was to directly support one million young Kenyans across the country to secure work online by end of 2017.
“The pursuit of an empowered, engaged and involved youth population cannot be fulfilled through my Ministry alone; neither can it be delivered by Government action alone. We require all stakeholders to pull resources and capacity together for greater impact and sustainable results,”he said.
Ajira Digital programme is a multi-sectoral Government initiative that aims to introduce young people in Kenya to online work and provide the tools, training and mentorship needed for them to work and earn an income through online work.
Young people aged between 18-34 years old constitute more than a third of the entire population, while 80 percent of Kenyans are less than 35 years old, this youth bulge presents enormous socio-economic opportunities through harnessing of their skills.
Under phase one of the Programme, KEPSA will oversee the development of the Ajira Digital training curriculum and the assigning of the trained apprentices to identified experienced workers and online freelancers.
Mr. Mucheru explained, that the government had availed strong internet infrastructure through 1,160 centers already set up across the country, and which was the single most important component in the initiative.
“In this regard, we are currently rolling out the Constituency Innovation Hubs project in partnership with Members of Parliament and the National Government Constituency Development Fund Board to provide free Wi-Fi in four locations in each of the 290 constituencies”, he said.
The ministry he explained will seek to expand the project’s reach and create more demand for online work, as well as work with stakeholders to position Kenya as a destination of choice for skilled online workers.