Junior Achievement (JA) Empowers African Youths for ICT Jobs

Published Feb. 22, 2021, 2:48 p.m. by Bethel Brill

THE continent's leading non-profit organization designed for empowering the younger generation Junior Achievement (JA) Africa in collaboration with Google, is offering young Africans the opportunity to learn and master some of the most in-demand skills. 

According to a statement released by JA Africa, this organization seeks to offer instructional support, scholarships, and enviable support to 1,500 marginalized youths between the ages of 18-35 in Nigeria, South Africa, and Kenya. 

This statement is coming few weeks after the non-profit organization received a $400,000 grant from Google. 

The statement released further revealed that students currently enrolled in their program will have a minimum of 1 year to complete an IT Support Professional course on one of the world’s leading online study platforms Coursera. 

“The outbreak of the deadly Corona Virus has halted global affairs and have moved companies to pursue technology and its full adaptation, in the process disrupting traditional workplace”, the statement reads. 

Citing a recent report published by the World Economic Forum on Jobs Report, JA Africa reiterated that Covid-19 has fastened the disruption of jobs and that we may be in for the fourth industrial revolution. 

“With this newfound reality, companies and businesses alike will demand a workforce that is capable of adapting to the new way of doing things — use of technological tools”.

“Based on a recent survey conducted by JA Africa on Youth Employment, 83% of African youths think that the African private sector will grow in the next couple of years. On the other hand, 93% of the youths are more concerned about the disruptive nature of Covid-19”. 

“Furthermore, more than 93% of these youths believe their current skills and education aren't enough to prepare them for the ever-changing realities of life. This realization is why they believe an update on their skill and education is paramount if they are to meet the requirements of the labor market now and in the future”, JA Africa further states. 

With Africa’s youth population expected to exceed 850 million by the end of 2050, JA Africa thinks they are the continent's best resources. The organization believes these youths are the driving force to the economic growth and development of the African continent. 

“Supporting the development of youth skills is key for maximizing the untapped potentials that will propel economic development in the continent”.

While speaking to reporters after the statement was released, Simi Nwogugu, CEO of JA Africa first thanked Google for the grant. Mrs. Nwogugu further stated that this grant will help accelerate the work they've been doing on the continent. 

Furthermore, the CEO stated that this grant will not only benefit the 1,500 “marginalized” African youths but will also be of great benefit to small and medium-sized enterprises (SMEs) struggling to adapt to the digital requirements needed to survive in this pandemic and after it is over.

“I am deeply looking forward to the remarkable feats this will achieve in Kenya, Nigeria, and South Africa”, Mrs. Nwogugu stated. 

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