KAMPALA — More than 600 youth are currently benefitting from the mentorship program which was launched by Boundless Minds in partnership with Coca-Cola Beverages Africa in Uganda (CCBA) in October this year.
Dubbed ‘Elevate’ the program seeks to empower youth with work ready skills to support their school-to-work transition. There is no doubt COVID-19 disrupted the lives of young people in various ways. This program provides youth with a meaningful way to spend their time.
“The progress and impact we have made with Elevate! keeps surprising me. Before this year started, it didn’t seem possible that we’d be able to train and impact the career and work fortunes of hundreds of young people, in one go. To be able to do that now, with numbers exceeding 600 mentees, for me is the epitome of what we seek to achieve,” commented Benjamin Rukwengye, Founder and Chief Executive of Boundless Minds.
“Of course, I know that we can, should and will definitely do more but I am excited that we are introducing this many young people to skills and knowledge that will prepare them for life, work and entrepreneurship,” he further added.
Elevate! is designed to be low-cost and low maintenance so that the youth can engage in it fully online. As part of the program, Boundless Minds is lead in administering the training, assessments and tracking engagement and participation. The talk topics involve staff of Coca-Cola Beverages Africa, professionals and Alumni of Boundless Minds.
Participants are enrolled on a rolling basis, primarily using The Mentor to access content in form of best practices, graphics and text. This is supplemented with WhatsApp groups for on-spot learning through mentorship sessions, thematic articles and videos. The mentorship period will run till December 10th, 2020.
“Well, I joined it after two weeks of it starting, to be honest I didn’t know what I would gain. But so far! I’ve learnt a lot, I’ve learned how to write my CV, what I need to fill my CV, my presentation skills have become better. I’ve been experimenting with apps like PowerPoint, WordPress, all that. Basically, for me, it has helped to get out of my shell. So many youths feel shadowed by Peers knowing “more” than them, yet all it needs is to find the right mentors and inspiration. I believe Elevate does that,” said Kukundakwe Precious Liz, Elevate Program Mentee.
Among the Corporate Social Investments priorities for Coca-Cola is investing and supporting youth and women in communities they operate in. This program aligns with the overall objective of the company to empower communities in which they operate in thereby creating a shared future for all.
“Our Vision; Refresh the world and make a difference is our north star. At Coca-Cola, we are always committed to support the communities and the youth are a big portion of the communities that we have in Uganda. We have energized youth in Uganda that we must empower to harness their full potential.
As part of our initiatives, we have different programs in Coca-Cola. One of them is a program called the “ Graduate Trainee Program where we bring a lot of young energetic people from different universities across Uganda and we give them all the mentorship they need to give for them to achieve what they want to achieve in life. I can attest to the power of mentorship in my own professional growth having gone through the same program. School is important but I believe there are far more important things that we can learn from different leaders across the organization and industry,” Melkamu Abebe, General Manager, Coca-Cola Beverages Africa in Uganda.
The first cohort under the program runs till December 20th and with the second cohort expected to start enrollment next year. Dates and timelines will be communicated once confirmed.