Work in Progress!
Picture: Butterfly Works
The goal of “Work in Progress!” is to improve the economic prospects of young people in Egypt, Somalia and Nigeria, by building their skills to find a job and stimulating entrepreneurship.
Improving the economic prospects of young people in Egypt, Somalia and Nigeria, by building their skills to find a job and stimulating entrepreneurship.
Socially engaged youth can be a driving force in Africa for economic growth and social progress. That is why The Work in Progress! Alliance is focused on unlocking the economic potential of young women and men in Egypt, Nigeria and Somalia. The Alliance is build up of Venture Capital for Africa, Butterfly Works, IOM and Oxfam Novib.
Their Theory of Change is build on three pillars and has the following major outcomes:
The Work in Progress! Alliance is very aware of the complex situation and therefore aims for an integrated programme approach with three characteristics:
1) It is gender sensitive and inclusive: the programme aims to have 50% of the actively engaged youths be women. For the other 50% the programme focuses on the specific needs and participation of young men.
2) It focuses both on the supply and the demand in the labour market, and tries to link enterprises and job-seeking youths.
3) And it aims to change policies and develop an enabling environment: advocacy for enabling policies and having role models advocate for youth participation in decision making and at the labour market.
- Project name: Work in Progress!
- Project period: 3 years from the 1st of January 2016 till 31st of December 2018
- Target group: Young people
- Location: Nigeria (Lagos and Edo State), Egypt (Cairo), Somalia (Somaliland)
- Budget: 7,5 millions Euro
Work in Progress! is funded by Ministry of Foreign Affairs in the Netherlands as a part of LEAD (Local Employment in Africa for Development)
The project is part of the Youth team. Global Project Manager: Mirjam Horstmeier
Egypt, Nigeria and Somalia are experiencing multiple social problems, however, one problem is ruling: an absence of future prospects for young women and men. They do not feel as part of society, are excluded from the political level and have great difficulty to find employment. Egypt has the second-highest percentage of youth unemployment in the world; Somalia and Nigeria also experiences rampant unemployment amongst young people. Next to this reality, ideas and prejudices exist that hinder youth, especially young women experience negative consequences as a result.
Several studies, coming from amongst others the United Nations (UN) and the International Labour Organisation (ILO), show that the lack of employment and the absence of prospects of a better future are the main reason for African youth to migrate illegally to Europe. Despite the relative economic and political improvements in Somalia, the country is still ranked seventh in terms of countries of origin of migrants crossing the Mediterranean Sea. Moreover, Nigeria is even ranked number four (after Syria, Afghanistan and Eritrea). The most common complaint of young people is that they do not have the opportunity to be included in the economic growth. Despite many governments are aware of the threat of a ‘lost generation,’ they do not seem to have the ability to turn the tides.
Below you will find 3 long term outcomes, with the short term outcomes.
- More young men and women have found paid jobs or are running their own enterprises.
- More youths in Egypt, Nigeria and Somalia have got access to business networks and have acquired necessary skills and information to start their own business
- Youths are better informed about skills needed for employment and job opportunities
- Youths have acquired sector specific, transferable skills better linked with the market needs (both soft skills technical skills)
- Local SMEs see business grow resulting in newly created positions for youth.
- Local SMEs have more access to networks, knowledge and credit
- Policy measures adopted and implemented that are able to improve labour participation of youth (women in particular), and to promote a business environment.
- Influential people in public and private sectors take lead in stimulating youth employment and business environment.
More youths in Egypt, Nigeria and Somalia have got access to business networks and have acquired necessary skills and information to start their own business.
VC4A (Venture Capital for Africa) will provide virtual incubation (mentorship, online academy, venture profiles) in all 3 countries. They will also provide accelerator programmes to at least 10 start ups in each country each year. In Nigeria they will be focusing on women start ups only. Furthermore VC4A will organize networking events for young entrepreneurs and investors in all 3 countries.
Youths are better informed about skills needed for employment and job opportunities.
IOM will build up a job center in Somaliland where youth can find information on internship, job vacancies and receive training in technical skills to prepare themselves for the job market. Butterfly Works will develop the Tunga platform an initiative that connects African software developers directly to paid international software tasks. It encourages transparency, collaboration and allows software companies to create a following of developers. Oxfam Novib will work on job fairs and soft skills for young people to be competitive on the job market.
Youths have acquired sector specific, transferable skills better linked with the market needs (both soft skills technical skills).
Butterfly Works will set up Bits schools in all three countries. Bits schools teach creative, digital, business and social skills to young people from underprivileged backgrounds. The schools are set up under the guidance of Butterfly Works, through a co-creation process with youth, educational institutes, parents, community members, teachers and businesses. IOM will deliver technical trainings to youth through their job centre in Somaliland. Oxfam Novib will work together with Butterfly Works on improving curricula on employability skills. And will provide training on employability skills in Nigeria and Somalia.
Local SMEs have more access to networks, knowledge and credit.
Oxfam Novib will work on Business Development Services (operational management, financial, HR, social impact, CSR) for Small and Medium Enterprises in Nigeria and Somalia. Network seminars will link SME’s so investors and policy makers. In Egypt a study on existing business support to SME and gap in this support will define the added value of Oxfam Novib in this field.
Influential people in public and private sectors take lead in stimulating youth employment and business environment.
To achieve the outcome, advocacy and communication plans that target policy makers, business and society as a whole will be implemented. In Egypt there will be a focus on Women and Employment. To be able to advocate two researchers will be done in different countries: in Egypt the project will study youth and especially young women and unemployment. In Nigeria a study on financial opportunities for SME’s will nourish the lobby to investors. An in Somalia the project will target university and government officials
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