This programme is geared towards transforming the lives of the youth in Tooro Region through financial Inclusion, sexual and reproductive health, sports and skilling interventions. The programme is aimed at building resilient youth with varied capacities and abilities to economically sustain themselves and the community around them.
Uganda has one of the youngest and fastest growing populations worldwide, with about half of the people being under the age of 15. As a result, the nation faces the challenge of meeting the needs of its youth – many of whom reside in rural areas and have limited education, skills, and work opportunities. According to the latest census, youth constitute 80% of the country´s unemployed. Many youth are engaged in activities that are low-skill, low-earning, low-productivity, and low-value-added.
About 85% of the labour is in rural areas, a notable percentage of the labour force is illiterate (30 percent). Close to 77% of the labour force had either no education or had attained primary education. In addition, about 75% of the labour force is below 40 years.
At least 41 percent of youth, which represents 9.3 million aged between 18 and 30 years are not engaged in any productive activity, according to findings contained in the Uganda National Labour Force Survey. The Uganda National Labour Force Survey, conducted for the period ended 2021 also found that unemployment had increased to 12 percent from 9 percent in the 2019/20 Uganda National Household Survey.
The National Youth policy recognizes that the major causes of a high youth unemployment rate are lack of employable skills, lack of access to resources like land and capital, lack of focus by the existing programs on the informal sector and agriculture, overemphasis on experience, lack of apprenticeship schemes, negative attitudes by the youth towards work especially in agriculture, lack of a comprehensive employment policy and negative cultural attitudes such as gender discrimination et cetera.
Generally, the high youth unemployment rate in Uganda and Africa at large can be attributed to the slow economic growth and small formal labour markets, high population growth rate, lack of sufficient experience and skills, lack of decent work, the rigid education system, rural-urban migration, limited social networks, youth’s limited access to capital support systems et cetera
Under this program, young people in Tooro Region will be offered marketable skills that they can use to work in factories or service sectors and or create opportunities for self–employment. The program will provide skills in key areas of:- ICT, masonry, carpentry, metal fabrication, hairdressing, tailoring, mechanics and agri-business. The program will also offer youth counseling, mentoring and coaching sessions mainly focused on attitude change and mental development.
The youth under this program will also be integrated in all FOTI programs and directly linked to the Fort Portal Legacy Center.
FOTI will reach 50,000 young people in Tooro Region in the next five (5) years through its multi-sectoral youth development initiatives.