HATW helped build Paluoc carpentry workshop which was started in 2010 and trains very disadvantaged young people in Kisumu. It has achieved a 100% pass rate in National Gr 3 for each of the last 3 years. Most successful students continue to train there to improve their own skills, acting too as positive role models for new trainees. Unusually, 2 of these are young women. The workshop now has its own planing machine - this reduces costs, develops useful new skills and generates a bit of income.
Many of Paluoc's trainees are orphans as a consequence of HIV/AIDS, who have dropped out of school and had no training for life or employment. Their self-esteem is very low and their prospects without outside help are very poor. Many of these young lives are at risk. Youngsters who have previously failed or dropped out of school, often through no fault of their own, need a place where they can achieve success and greater self-confidence and self worth.
Training brings meaning and structure into their lives. The centre acts as a source of support and help. Paluoc is establishing itself as a good and free training centre, an unusual combination. Training includes teaching basic numeracy and literacy skills where necessary, in addition to aspiring to produce carpentry of above-average standard. It leads to a nationally recognised qualification, some business skills and a small starter toolkit. Figures quoted will cover the next 12 months.
The project will help many young people to find employment and enable them to become self-sufficient, supporting both themselves and their families. Starting with a relatively small cohort, we aim to gradually increase the number of trainees. With sufficient funding, we hope to be able to extend the project to offer training in other disciplines and to more young people in the future. The aim is to provide hope, encouragement, useful new skills, and a means of employment - a way out of poverty.