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Linking youth with disabilities to wage employment through vocational and soft skills training

ADDA aims to facilitate coaching of youth with disabilities with market- oriented vocational and soft skills and links them to jobs in Kenya

Photo of Rina Kamukam

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What problem does your idea solve?

To sensitize mainstream vocational training centers & orientation in market driven curricula adaptations & implementation for youth with disabilities to access these training centers for market driven skills & soft skills & eventually link them to jobs. In the era of inclusion, the special vocational centers are bulging out and cannot handle training big numbers of youth with disabilities, let alone market oriented training. ADDA ceases this opportunity to make sure the YWDs are not left behind.

Explain your idea

Kenya currently has a population of 44.35 Million people. 67% of this population is persons with disabilities, 80% whom are at the right age to work. Data on persons with disabilities employed is still unavailable, presumably low because most of them are poor and opportunities are limited. Youth unemployment in Kenya is consequently an outcome of limited employment opportunities and lack of employable skills, which is compounded by the mismatch between skills and labour market demands. It is worse for persons with disabilities as they find themselves excluded from accessing mainstream vocational training centers, for training, lacking the necessary skills to tap into the job market. ADDA addresses these challenges through working with mainstream vocational training centers to offer market oriented skills like ICT and soft skills thereafter connecting youth with disabilities to wage jobs. During this time, ADDA ensures that the mainstream centers are sensitized on disability issues, their curricula adapted to youth with disabilities’ training needs, and reasonable accommodation is offered to ensure a smooth transition from skills acquisition to work. ADDA further links up with employers, sensitizes them to ensure that skilled youth with disabilities eventually get accommodated and get jobs. It is through this holistic approach that got more than 200 youth with disabilities access relevant training in the mainstream vocational centers and 70% receiving employment

Who benefits?

The average age of the youth with disabilities reached are below 30 years old, poor and living in both rural and urban area, 47% being female with disabilities. During initial assessments, most of these youth are usually secondary school drop out, or secondary school graduates who are unemployed and cannot access tertiary training due to lack of fees and mobility difficulties, or simply lack of a good training facilities that can offer a course that is of their interest.

How is your idea unique?

Since 2014, ADDA has been implementing a pilot project called EmployAble, which aims to empower youth with disabilities to access relevant market driven skills leading to employment. ADDA has worked with multiple training providers and employers in different sectors and has over 200 youth with different types of impairment trained and 70 % linked to employment. Working with multi stakeholder and mainstream partners in this regard gives ADDA unique understanding of the dynamic labour market needs and translating these needs to blend in with training programs in the vocational training centers, and also deep insights on curriculum adaptations and reasonable adaptations required by youth with different types of impairment. The Job placement officer helps to analyze the market and gives input which is shared with the mainstream vocational centers before training. These centers are also oriented on how to facilitate soft skills. In this regard, the graduates become ready for work.

Tell us more about you

Agency for Disability and Development in Africa, ADDA is an NGO registered in Kenya. ADDA has employees and resource personnel with more than 25 years of experience in the disability field. In inclusive career training & employment, the team consists of program Coordinator Rina Kamukam who coordinates all the activities pertaining training and employment, assisted by Susannah Nakibuuka, Job Placement Assistant. We also work with two mainstream training centers that provide space for training.

Where will your idea be implemented?

  • Kenya

Experience in Implementation Country(ies)

  • Yes, for more than one year.

Expertise in Sector

  • I've worked in a sector related to my idea for more than a year.

Organizational Status

  • We are a registered non-profit, charity, NGO, or community-based organization.

Idea Maturity

  • Early Growth/Roll-out/Scaling: I have completed a pilot and am ready or in the process of expanding.

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