On August 9th, our Head of Programs, Natasha Kimani, took the stage at the DFID-lead event to discuss the work WTS is doing to create safe spaces for youth to surface, discuss and solve their life challenges with guidance and mentorship from the Shujaaz media team and a group of international experts.
According to various projections, in today’s Kenya there are almost 10 million youth 15-24. Currently, over half of them are full-time students aiming to enter the workforce in the near future; yet, as per the Shujaaz national survey of youth, in Kenya the trend is consistent in that only about 5% of youth aged 15-24 find formal employment, one in ten each are either self-employed or doing occasional assignments for other people, and the rest are stuck in the cycle of hopeless job-search. With financial despair comes risky sexual behavior (including in exchange for money), substance abuse (to kill time), and anger and disillusion in governance.
At WTS, we believe that youth are capable of solving these challenges when given a chance to connect, discuss them in a safe space, and work together to promote own agency/confidence and financial health. For the past 10 years, we’ve been using our multi-media platform to initiate conversations among youth, including about social and economic empowerment through small-scale entrepreneurship/hustling.
As more youth gain access to the internet, we will be expanding our digital community and ways for meaningful engagement online, including more online learning opportunities.
You can read more on our research on youth in Kenya here:
Sexual and Reproductive health:
Financial Fitness and Money