KAMPALA – Development partners have come together in a new initiative to make graduates more employable and facilitate their smooth transition to work.
The programme funded by the European Union is jointly implemented by Enabel, a Belgian development agency that executes the Belgian governmental cooperation and Private Sector Foundation Uganda and targets 1000 recent graduates countrywide.
Launched in Kampala on Monday, the initiative comes as a response to the skills and attitude problem noted among graduates, which according to the private sector is a serious obstacle to business growth and productivity.
The development is intended at addressing the challenge through the placement of graduates in various private sector companies for at least 6 months training, mentorship and coaching.
The Country Representative of the Belgian development agency Enabel, Tom Vanneste says graduates under the scheme will be helped to enhance their personal attributes and abilities to make them work-ready.
According to the Chief Executive Officer, Private Sector Foundation Uganda, Stephen Assimwe, the skills of most graduates are below employability levels. He cites a recent damning study, which concluded that they are “unemployable.”
“They lack important skills and attributes such as effective communication, self–drive, time management, leadership, creativity, adaptability, collaboration, emotional intelligence, customer service,” Assimwe added.
He notes that the lack of appropriately skilled labour deters private sector investment and business growth in the country.
The work readiness programme is part of five million euros project funded by the European Union aiming to make Uganda’s business environment more conducive through increasing the supply of appropriately skilled workers, establishing private sector-led initiatives to reduce corruption and strengthening public-private sector dialogue on issues affecting business growth and sustainability.