CCDO Youths Against their Rights Violations
The Children Care Development Organization (CCDO) project of “YouthSparks and Employability Creation has been implemented along Iringa district of Iringa Region in Tanzania by training unemployed youths coming from destitute families in which poverty is vivid. The implemented project objectives were to increase household income, reduce malnutrition in children and improve living conditions along Iringa districts and isolated communities of Nduli and Mkimbizi areas, cut of their sources of employment and social services, through the empowerment of youth as wage-earners and the creation of jobs. Other objectives were to provide youth with vocational training in tailoring, managerial and technical capacity building to enable them to run a business, provide youth with basic equipment to start a job and support them to become organized in community based working units of effectively manage and run their businesses, establish youth associations in tailoring, cultural heritage business, and ICT to represent youth’s interests, provide them with technical, administrative and logistical support and promote their products in the formal market.
Activities Carried Out
A series of meetings with direct and indirect beneficiaries were conducted at community level. At the very beginning of the project - preparation stage- CCDO outsourced experienced staffs staff to carry out field visits and meet with direct and indirect beneficiaries in the field. The Project Manager, together with other CCDO staff, conducted meetings with local councils, community-based organizations, women’s centres, community leaders, and women activists. The field meetings with beneficiaries were designed so as to survey and target each village in the cluster in order to present the idea of the project and involve local communities in the process of selecting participants according to the criteria identified in the project. During such meetings, beneficiaries were offered complete information about the project’s goals and objective. Moreover, such meetings strengthened the cooperation with governmental bodies like the Ministry of Local Authorities, which later sent a letter of support to CCDO indicating its appreciation of the project’s contribution to poverty reduction and the generation of income for needy families.
64 Participants were exposed to training techniques mainly designed to develop their skills and performance in Tailoring, cultural heritage and ICT entrepreneurship skills. Training topics set out to meet their training needs and to overcome their difficulties. The training was comprehensive and included all necessary topics in the mentioned subjects. After sewing training, women became able to sew clothes for themselves and their families. Others managed to sew clothes for their community, as illustrated by the example of some women that went on to design and sew school uniforms and bridegroom dresses.
As a result of the training courses, committees of five participants that involve the most active participants were elected at the end of the training. The five participants, who represent their villages, were expected to take part in the coming project activities and, as active members of the general assembly of the, youth’s associations were planned to be established by the end of the project. Project staff conducted a series of meetings with the committees to clarify their roles in future project activities with CCDO. They will take part in capacity building training in the field of management, networking, marketing and fundraising. They will be the members of CCDO Change Agent aiming to organize youth and to identify their priorities and meet their needs.
(a) Targeted youth have developed skills in tailoring, cultural heritage and ICT skills matching standards to satisfy market demands, as well as managerial and technical capacities to run a business
(b) Targeted youth have been provided with equipment and, organised in community-based working units which cover all fields of production and marketing, are able to effectively manage their businesses; (c) Two CCDO Change Agent associations have been established and have taken over the overall management of the working units representing their interests, offering them technical and administrative support and marketing their products; (d) Businesses have been established, are sustainable and generate a basic income for the families of the beneficiaries.
Despite the achieved mentioned objectives above, many youth participants requested to be supported sewing machines after the end of their training for their self-employment sustainability. This is a serious challenge for CCDO management on how to raise money for purchasing sewing machines for our loved most vulnerable youth living under poverty and unemployment. The donated money would help us to buy 20 sewing machines if this project is supported by donors. While the others said that, they want to be supported small revolving soft loans fund for manufacturing traditional bamboo cultural heritage products so as to be engaged into informal sector business for tourism business ventures.