Practical Work Experience
In response to Kenya’s high youth unemployment rate, the ‘Workforce Connect program’ seeks to link low-income youth to temporary jobs/internships. These underemployed youth are characterized by weak connections to the work world and limited knowledge of career options. The placements typically last anywhere between 4 to 6 weeks across a public, private or civil sector partner. Participant benefits include: an income, skills development and access to a professional network, ultimately improving their future labor market prospects.
The program is focused on all youth in Universities and a special focus on youth from low-income neighborhoods or settlements e.g. slum areas and impoverished learning institutions (polytechnics, colleges, and universities) graduates. With an academic and skills training partner, the program has the potential to engage non-skilled participants.
A variety of avenues exist to reach out to these special target populace e.g. Community Based Organizations (CBOs), local government authorities, religious institutions etc.
The temporary work placements with either private, public or civil sector partners, are structured to run for a period of between 4 to 6 weeks with the participants. An income is made available for participating youth to mitigate against barriers to enrolling and staying on the short-term employment program.
Figure 1 and 2 below depict the work process flow for both the employer and employee/participants side:
Figure 1; Participant
While the participant age range will vary, young people must typically be at least 18 to be eligible and no older than 30. Hired youth will expect to work about 25 and 35 hours per week.
Figure 2; Employer
Employer recruitment is commenced after a skills survey is conducted across potential participants to increase the probability of job-participant matching.
Some worksites/employers do not require particular skills or experience e.g. general admin. functions, while others are more selective or competitive depending on the job profile e.g. IT functions. Youth and employer-side supervisors will receive several check-ins from program staff during the placement to offer guidance and quickly address any emerging problems.
An insurance partner will be enlisted to provide potential liability cover over the duration of the program (e.g. against theft, injury etc.).
At the end of the placement, evidence of participation in the program will be awarded to the participants as a back up to their enriched CVs.
Oversee overall program ensuring sufficient staff capacity and capability to deliver critical program elements at a high level of quality, executing with clear roles, sufficient staff training, support and coordination across partner firms or organizations.
Recruiting & Matching Officer
Design work recruitment adverts, enroll both young people and employers, and subsequently sustain their participation to provide the maximum number of job opportunities.
Matching young people with age- and skill-appropriate opportunities, differentiating by age, work readiness and youth interests.
Monitoring & Review Officer
Conduct formal coaching in addition to delivering support services/structures for both participating youth and employers.
Conduct impact evaluation at the end of the first program cycle.
Actively establish partnerships through leveraging existing community resources/organizations connecting the program with other educational, training, employment or youth development services for participants.
ICT & Communication services Officer
Deploy information technologies to improve program management and communication among partners and participants, including information management systems to streamline enrolment and job matching and to strengthen tracking and evaluation.
Finance & Administration Officer
Carry out payroll function (internal and external) and, in addition, program administrative duties.