Over 440 youth trained in solar installation and maintenance

Aleast 441 youths in Lango and Acholi sub regions have been passed out on productive use of solar energy, business skills, solar installation and maintenance.

VET toolbox, a multi-donor jointly co-financed by the European Union and the German Federal ministry of economic cooperation and development financed the vocational training to improve access to clean and affordable energy.

Five training institutions which include, UTC Lira, Puranga, Nakawa vocational training college, Northern Uganda Youth Development Centre and Daniel Comboni Vocational institute in Gulu trained the beneficiaries.The trainees were passed out on Friday during the VET Toolbox closing event held at UTC Lira.

Dauda Kimanyayi, the project manager, said Uganda is endowed with great renewable energy potential, able to generate power from solar resources, hydro resources, biomass and wind but only about 50% has access to electricity.According to Kimanyayi only 50% of the population have access to electricity, 24% connected to the national grid and 38% of the rural dwellers access the electricity.He added that yet 70% of the population lives in rural areas with high demand for electricity and renewable energy.

.He said the project targets the local population not to only benefit from electricity and also employment opportunities.The principal of UTC, Lira, Jacob Akunobere, appreciated the partners to offer them opportunities to equip the youth with marketable skills and so far they are not the same as before.He also lauded the Directorate of Industrial Training for conducting the assessment on the 116 trainees in the institution and recommended that all of them passed.

He added that though the training was successful, but there is a big gap especially for the female gender in the community who are faced with a lot of challenges and one of which came when COVID-19 broke out.“Many got pregnant by irresponsible men and left school. So this gap is there in the community and they need to be supported,” he said.

Micheal Kinyere, a beneficiary running a computer Centre business in Lamwo district said with the aid of AVISI foundation, one of the partners, he acquired a machine to facilitate printing t-shirts and expand his business.He said people still believed that good products are produce in Town not in rural areas but after acquiring the machine, he disapproved many.“The availability of the machine, gave room and opportunity to expand my business because at the initial stage my business limping but when the machine got in place and it kick operation, I managed to buy two printers and employ more people,” he said.

   Sharon Adokorac, said before she acquired entrepreneurship skills, she had been a tailor and could make a very little money (shillings 20, 000) on daily basis.She said after the training she was offered grinding mills and started earning sh50, 000 daily more than before.
By Arao Denis

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