In Uganda, only 53% of children finish primary school (World Bank, 2016) . There is a high level of child poverty in many areas, so children must help with chores at home, or go out and look for work. School is also expensive – uniforms, books, pens, exams all need paying for.  

Even for those who do complete primary school, going on to secondary school costs even more as fees are charged on top of other costs so many don’t go.  Only 4% of the university age population go on to higher education (World Bank, 2011)

This means many young people are joining the jobs market unskilled and uneducated. There are few jobs around, and many don’t fit with the skills young people have. As a result, 83% of 18-30 year olds are unemployed (African Development Bank, 2013). 

Vocational training

East African Playgrounds is providing young Ugandans with an alternative – an apprenticeship scheme through our playground building programmes. Former street children and other disadvantaged young people, identified through our partner organisation SALVE International, work in a paid capacity with East African Playgrounds for up to twelve months.  They learn welding, pre-fabrication and playground installation, as well as other practical transferable skills. Apprentices gain valuable experience of a work environment, and their progress is reviewed regularly through formal assessment. They are also provided with healthcare cover, breakfast and lunch, safety equipment and external training opportunities.

Once they have completed the programme, they are equipped with skills and experience to help them find employment (with East African Playgrounds or elsewhere) in the future, or go onto further training. This then allows new apprentices to join the scheme.

Welder teaching welding