Young Africa Works
1. Message from Senior Technical Advisor – Ian Warrender
Hello, it has been a full year now since I started working with the Young Africa Works in Kenya-TVET program on April 14 2020, and what a year it’s been! 2020 was largely devoted to launching the Phase 1 Institutional Partnerships (TVET-06 to -10), the MEDA Labour Market Analysis consultancy (TVET-04), the CAP YEI Life Skills Curriculum consultancy (TVET-05), and the Thematic Partnerships of Pre- and In-Service Teacher Training (TVET-01), Recognition of Prior Learning (TVET-02), Curricula Gap Audit (TVET-03), Labour Market Methods (TVET-11), and Career Guidance and Mentorship (TVET-12).
Thus far in 2021, we have launched the Thematic Partnerships of Applied Research and Innovation Hubs (TVET-13) and Gender Equality Policies and Training (TVET-14). A big shout-out to the Young Africa Works in Kenya-TVET team for their endless hours spent preparing the request for proposals (RFPs), terms of reference (TORs), and agreements, along with scheduling/conducting interviews and so much more.
Prior to the March 27 2021 lockdown directive by the Kenyan government, we were able to conduct, over a six-week period starting mid-February, our baseline assessment. We visited 26 TVET partner institutions, and through key informant interviews (KIIs), collected data on the institutions’ policies, career guidance services, linkages to industry, status of Competency Based Education and Training (CBET)-trained instructors, and gender policies. We also took advantage of these onsite visits to provide the institutions with further orientation to the Young Africa Works in Kenya-TVET program and engaged in focus group discussions (FGDs) with students and the gender committees.
Despite the challenges of limited social contact, I and our team continue to meet regularly via Zoom and Teams with the Kenyan State Department of Vocational and Technical Training, Technical and Vocational Education and Training (TVET) Authority, Kenya National Qualifications Authority (KNQA), TVET- Curriculum Development Assessment and Certificate (CDACC), and others. I am continually amazed at the resilience and optimism amongst our Kenyan partners during this time.
We are now entering Phase 2 of Institutional Partnerships – the largest launch of institutional partnerships CICan has ever undertaken. We are looking forward to working with the talented people from the CICan member institutions and Kenyan TVET institutions who will be part of this very exciting new phase in the Young Africa Works in Kenya-TVET program.
2. Young Africa Works in Kenya-TVET News and Events
About Young Africa Works-Kenya: Youth Employability through TVET
Young Africa Works-Kenya: Youth Employability through TVET (Young Africa Works in Kenya-TVET) is a 5-year partnership between Colleges and Institutes Canada (CICan) and the Mastercard Foundation, and will be implemented in collaboration with the Ministry of Education and the private sector in Kenya. As a key component of the Mastercard Foundation’s Young Africa Works strategy, the program will strengthen the quality of Technical and Vocational Education and Training (TVET) institutions and systems in Kenya.
Through a partner-driven participatory approach, Young Africa Works in Kenya – TVET will focus on developing 26 Centres of Excellence (COEs) as model institutions that will increase the participation of young Kenyans, particularly women, in market-relevant skills training programs to ultimately increase the number of youth in dignified and fulfilling work in the Big Four Agenda and digital sectors.
The project has three thematic areas which will be delivered in an integrated manner:
- TVET institutions to deliver high quality Competency-Based Education and Training (CBET) courses linked to labour market demands
- Technically competent TVET trainers to use CBET methods to deliver up to date curricula
- Pathways created from unemployment through training to work
Kenyan partners: Institutional Partnerships (Kenyan TVET institutions), the Ministry of Education (MoE), CAP Youth Empowerment Institute (CAP-YEI)
Kenyan partners: The Ministry of Education (MoE), TVET institutions, CAP Youth Empowerment Institute (CAP-YEI), Kenya Technical Trainers College (KTTC), TVET Authority (TVETA), Curriculum Development Assessment and Certificate Council (CDACC), Kenya National Qualifications Authority (KNQA), Forum for African Women Educationalists (FAWE), Kenya Association of Manufacturers (KAM), Kenya National Chamber of Commerce & Industry (KNCCI), National Gender and Equality Commission (NGEC), Kenya Private Sector Alliance (KEPSA)
Other partners: CICan member institutions, Mennonite Economic Development Associates (MEDA), Devotra
Centres of Excellence Orientation sessions
In early 2021, orientation sessions were held with the 25 Kenya TVET partner institutions that will be engaged in the Phase 2 Institutional Partnerships. These sessions focused on introducing the Young Africa Works in Kenya-TVET program as well as the institutional partnership activities to be implemented. The newly selected partner institutions also got to hear from the national polytechnics about their previous experience working with CICan and Canadian institutions.
Meeting with new TVET Principal Secretary, Margaret Mwakima
Following portfolio reassignments by President Uhuru Kenyatta on February 17 2021, Dr. Margaret Mwakima replaced Dr. Julius Jwan as the Principal Secretary in the State Department for Vocational and Technical Training.
On March 29 2021, CICan had a virtual meeting with the newly appointed Principal Secretary to brief her on CICan Kenya projects, including the Young Africa Works in Kenya-TVET initiative. The PS was pleased with the program’s progress and assured the team of the Kenyan Government and Kenyan Ministry of Education’s support.
Nation FM Radio interview on RPL with KNQA
On April 15 2021, Senior Technical Advisor Ian Warrender and Kenya National Qualifications Authority (KNQA) Director of Technical Services Stanley Maindi went on air at Nation FM to discuss recognition of prior learning (RPL) in Kenya, and the efforts being made through the TVET-02 thematic partnership.
3. Young Africa Works in Kenya-TVET Partner Updates
TVET-06: Durham College (Lead) and Algonquin College in partnership with The Eldoret National Polytechnic and The Kitale National Polytechnic
CICan and this partnership collaborated to procure IT and communication resources for the CBET resource center at The Kitale National Polytechnic. The partners also co-facilitated two CBET workshops and a Gender Equality workshop for trainers and heads of department.
Partnership Coordinator Sylvia Ingati handing over equipment to Principal John Akola for the Teaching and Learning Centre at The Kitale National Polytechnic.
Virtual Gender Equality workshop on February 24 2021 at The Eldoret National Polytechnic and The Kitale National Polytechnic.
TVET-07: Humber College (Lead), Vancouver Island University, and Durham College in partnership with the National Polytechnics of Kisumu, Kisii, and Sigalagala
The Canadian partners facilitated a number of training sessions for their Kenyan partners, including virtual bi-weekly lesson plan development training, ongoing virtual pedagogy and CBET training and mentorship sessions, and a Gender Equality workshop.
Virtual Gender Equality workshop on February 25 2021 with The Kisumu, Sigalagala, and Kisii National Polytechnics.
TVET-08: Cégep Saint-Jean-sur-Richelieu (Lead), Collège Communautaire du Nouveau-Brunswick, and Champlain College in partnership with Nyeri National Polytechnic and Meru National Polytechnic
The partners established course committees and started preparation for delivering trainings for trainers on lesson plans and assessment tools at both Kenyan partner institutions.
TVET-09: College of the North Atlantic (Lead) and New Brunswick Community College in partnership with Kabete National Polytechnic and North Eastern National Polytechnic
The partners reached out to industry members to be part of the Industry Advisory Committees as well as to explore training and equipment availability.
TVET-10: Nova Scotia Community College (Lead) and Camosun College in partnership with Kenya Coast National Polytechnic
IT equipment was procured for the project team at Kenya Coast National Polytechnic. The partners started a course for the Kenyan partner focused on strengthening capacity in the development of assessment tools and associated learning materials.
TVET-01: Pre- and In-Service Training, with the Ministry of Education, Kenya Technical Trainers College (KTTC), and TVETA and the Canadian consortium of Algonquin College, Durham College, and Camosun College
The partnership completed a situational analysis, including a training needs analysis survey. The partnership also completed high level learning outcomes and a draft curriculum plan for the pre-service and in-service training curriculum and solicited partner feedback.
TVET-02: RPL, led by Kenyan partner KNQA in collaboration with the Canadian consortium of Humber College, NorQuest College, and Red River College
The partnership finalized the situational analysis of current initiatives and standards/procedures in RPL. They conducted interviews and surveys on their capacity and knowledge of RPL and reviewed a variety of various documents, policies, frameworks, and articles.
TVET-03: Curricula Gap Audit, led by the Kenyan agency TVET-CDACC in partnership with the Canadian consortium of NorQuest College, Seneca College, and College of the Rockies
The partnership completed the categorization of the 375+ curricula approved by CDACC according to the Big Four and digital sectors. The database supports the gap audit as it allows the identification of new levels and content needed for programming in line with sectors identified through the labour market assessments.
TVET-11: Labour Market Information (LMI) Research, with the lead Kenyan agency of the Ministry of Education and the Canadian Consortium of Seneca College, Niagara College, and the Marine Institute
The partnership completed their workplan and developed a survey for the situational gap analysis which will be deployed in May 2021. The results of this survey will help to guide the LMI training and capacity building that will be developed in upcoming activities.
TVET-12: Career Guidance and Mentorship Services, with the lead Kenyan agency of KUCCPS in collaboration with the Canadian Consortium of Collège Communautaire du Nouveau-Brunswick, Cégep Saint-Jean-Sur-Richelieu, and Vanier College
The partnership completed their workplan and started their situational analysis of current initiatives in career education, career guidance, and mentorship services at the Kenya partner TVET institutions.
TVET-13: Applied Research and Innovation Policies
Young Africa Works in Kenya-TVET completed the partner selection process for a thematic partnership to support the implementation of national applied research and innovation policies at the Kenya partner TVET institutions. The selected lead partner is Cégep Saint-Jean-sur-Richelieu who works in partnership with Collège Communautaire du Nouveau-Brunswick and John Abbott College with the lead Kenyan partner, Kenya Association of Manufacturers.
TVET-14: Gender Policies and Training
Young Africa Works in Kenya-TVET completed the partner selection process for a thematic partnership to support the implementation of gender policies and training at the Kenya partner TVET institutions. The selected lead Canadian partner is Niagara College who will work in partnership with Sheridan College. The Kenyan partner for this activity is National Gender Equality Commission.
MEDA – TVET-04
The Mennonite Economic Development Associates (MEDA) team conducted nine virtual workshops to validate the results from the eight regional labour market assessments. Following the validation workshops, MEDA conducted field missions to gather additional data for the labour market assessments, and final reports will be completed by June 2021.
Female Youth Focus Group discussions at Weru Technical Vocational College.
County Agricultural Officers for Taita Taveta in Wundanyi.
CAP YEI – TVET-05
CAP Youth Empowerment Institute (CAP YEI) developed a first draft of the training of trainers (TOT) manual on life skills and work readiness and completed a gender needs analysis to ensure that gender equality was integrated in the curriculum. The purpose of this TOT manual is to provide the content and materials to train master trainers on how to teach employability skills.
Phase 2 Institutional Partnerships Request for Proposal (RFP) Update
The RFP for the Phase 2 Institutional Partnerships, comprising of 10 institutional partnerships and 25 Kenyan TVET institutions, was released on April 29 2021, and the deadline for proposal submission is June 7 2021. The partners for Phase 2 Institutional Partnerships will be working to update, improve, develop, or introduce CBET courses in the Big Four and digital sectors at the Kenyan partner TVET institutions.
4. Gender Desk
CICan conducted FGDs and KIIs with female and male trainees and Gender Mainstreaming Committee members as part of the baseline gender situational analysis in February and March 2021.
Gender and Youth Specialist Ellyjoy Masila moderates discussions with GMC members at Lodwar Vocational and Training Centre on February 15 2021.
Male TVET trainees with The Eldoret National Polytechnic deliberate during a breakout session as part of the FGDs on February 16 2021.
5. Monitoring, Evaluation and Learning (MEL)
Between mid-February and March 2021, the Young Africa Works in Kenya-TVET team, accompanied by the Mastercard Foundation team, conducted a series of baseline assessments at the 26 Kenya partner TVET institutions. The survey, comprising of 230 KIIs, focused on TVET training delivery, gender responsive TVET training, and institutional management. The data obtained will be instrumental in determining the strategies in a changing context to promote effective TVET skills training programs for youth in the Big Four and digital sectors.
A KII being conducted by Senior Program Officer Brenda Waguma at KTTC on February 11 2021, as part of the baseline survey exercise.
From left, Young Africa Works in Kenya-TVET Partnership Coordinator for Kisumu, Derrick Masinde, and two KTTC trainers during the baseline survey exercise at KTTC on February 11 2021.
Trainees, trainers, and staff members from Lodwar Vocational Training Centre together with members from the Young Africa Works in Kenya-TVET team are all smiles after the completion of the baseline survey exercise at the institution on February 15 2021.
Senior Technical Advisor Ian Warrender hands over Young Africa Works in Kenya-TVET merchandise to two faculty heads from Friends College Kaimosi during the baseline survey exercise at the institution on February 19 2021.
6. Partner Spotlight
In this new segment, we will be highlighting a Young Africa Works in Kenya-TVET partner and the strides they are making in their industry as well as how their participation has been instrumental in steering program activities.
In this volume we put the spotlight on Kenya Association of Manufacturers (KAM).
Established in 1959, KAM is a representative of manufacturing and value-add industries in Kenya. Currently, there are over 1,400 members.
KAM offers support to its members through two ways:
- Policy and Advocacy.
- Responding to members needs by looking at challenges that prevent businesses from conducting their businesses, for example, handling issues on tariffs, electricity, and exports, just to name a few.
The Association engages with the counties through their coordination teams for devolution purposes for the local manufacturer. Having regional offices allows them national access to all kinds of manufacturers in Kenya.
KAM is the lead Kenyan partner for our Young Africa Works in Kenya TVET-13 Thematic Partnership. They are working with the Canadian consortium of Cégep Saint-Jean-sur-Richelieu, Collège Communautaire du Nouveau-Brunswick, and John Abbott College, to support the implementation of Applied Research and Innovation Policies at partner TVET institutions.
Of course, the Association has also played a key role in the selection of Canadian partner institutions for Thematic Partnership TVET-13. They also participated in interviews by KNQA for the TVET-02 situational analysis of current initiatives and standards/procedures in the RPL.
We spoke to Miranda Pendo, the TVET Program Coordinator at KAM, to find out what the organization hopes to gain from the TVET-13 partnership, as well as how best the Young Africa Works in Kenya-TVET initiative can support KAM in their new role.
What outcomes do you hope to realize as a result of this partnership?
“Our key thing is ensuring that there is value for our members. This partnership will give our members the opportunity to:
- Identify innovations and think futuristically about what they require for tomorrow.
- Provide feedback to technical institutions on the requirements, i.e., the industry-led standards, through which the institutions can use to grow innovations.
- Identify possible members for KAM through the innovators, namely innovations by young people that can be used by manufacturers and the innovators can become members of KAM as well. This ensures value throughout the cycle.
- Advise technical institutions on what industry on applied research and the type of innovations, working closely with them to nurture innovations.
- Fast track acceptance of innovations from the Centres of Excellence in the project by our members, larger private sector and other stakeholders.”
What attributes in your organization do you hope to leverage to make this partnership a success?
“We’ve had experience with Technical Training Institutes (TTIs) and industry engagement through our TVET Program. Technical committees that bring TTIs and industry together have enabled them to identify gaps and synergies. For instance, manufacturers lacking certain trainings have gone to TTIs to receive those trainings. As well, TTI students have a block within industry as part of their learning. Student engagement and continuous sharing of learnings has enriched how we do our other programs, not just offering internships and later employment opportunities.
It is all part of looking at how to reduce youth unemployment. How do we ensure that we have relevant skills that can match those opportunities?”
Can you tell us about collaborations you have had in the past and what learnings from them you hope to integrate into this partnership? And what can we do to make your experience as a partner memorable?
“We have partnerships with other government line ministries such as Ministry of Industrialization, Ministry of Labor, and of course the Ministry of Education which we will bring to this partnership as TTIs establish innovation hubs. Another key collaboration is the National Innovation Agency.
KAM has a Projects Committee that gives guidance. Since they sit on the board, they are able to advise the association on projects that add value to the members. They ensure that the projects are relevant to where KAM is going.
Having a joint thought process or co-creation is important. Sometimes what works now might not work in a year. For example, COVID-19 has forced us to shift and think differently in terms of how we used to program. Donors need to be open to being able to see an impact through these shifts.
Having constant exchanges on what is working and what is not and being flexible to change is essential. Some donors might refuse to change how to implement their projects, yet the business environment is different, as in the environment might change after the 2022 Kenyan elections.
Resources such as staffing, capacity of staff, financial resources, etc, will never be enough. It is important for donors to recognize ways in which their ideas can be scaled up without losing their identity.
These lessons and more have enabled KAM to take such learnings to other programs.”
Closing comments from Miranda Pendo
“This partnership with Young Africa Works in Kenya-TVET is exciting because it is something new. It is something that I’ll learn from, and I look forward to seeing how it turns out.”
Senior Technical Advisor Ian Warrender and KAM’s TVET Program Coordinator Miranda Pendo are all smiles at the KAM offices on May 7 2021, after an interview for the Young Africa Works in Kenya-TVET May Newsletter.
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