TVET:Let’s not lag behind

Alfred Ntagungira

What you need to know:

  • This is an opportunity to help Africa’s youth develop their skills at the pace that governments and industries need.

World Skills is an international organization with 87 member states that organises world and national championships for vocational skills every two years in different parts of the world and hosts conferences about vocational skills. It is known as the Olympics of skills. 

World Skills Africa is a regional organization affiliated with World Skills International, focusing on developing and improving vocational skills standards and competitions across the African continent.

It  will provide African nations with a dedicated platform to improve skills development, build capacity, and reimagine Technical and Vocational Education and Training (TVET) systems across the continent.
The idea took shape in 2019, when World Skills International (WSI) and the African Union Commission (AUC), signed a memorandum of understanding (MoU) for its development. 

Policymakers, private sector organizations, and partners saw for themselves the potential of a regional organization, and how it could strengthen the bond between vocational education, market demands, and creating opportunities for youth. It aims to influence change across government, education and industry, so that each aligns with the evolving skill landscapes. 

In doing so, it hopes to increase employability prospects for young people and help industries diversify and grow.
However, despite Uganda having these resourceful trainers in addition to participating in regional competitions, World Skills Uganda has failed to organize national competitions that are supposed to precede the international competitions in Lyon France this year. 

On the other hand, Rwanda, which is not a member of World skills, successfully hosted the African skills competition in 2018, Namibia in 2022, and Zambia has started preparations to host the next African competitions in 2025.

With a population of 1.4 billion people, 65 percent of which are under the age of 25, Africa is the fastest growing and youngest population in the world. Yet it is also the continent with the greatest unemployment. This is an opportunity to help Africa’s youth develop their skills at the pace that governments and industries need.

Alfred Ntagungira,  Technical and Vocational trainer at St Joseph VTC Kamuli, and CEO Ufundi Tech Afrika.