YouthConnekt connects Rwandan youth to jobs and business opportunities

14 Nov 2013

image(PHOTO CREDIT: Aylin Schulzvanendert )

Rwanda’s Ministry of Youth and ICT (MYICT) in partnership with UNDP, ADMA, Tigo, and HeHe launched Youth Connekt as a platform to connect innovative young Rwandans to help with the country’s inclusive economic transformation. This platform will serve as a channel for youth, private sector, and government to address the challenges youth are facing in terms of employment and entrepreneurship.

The platform has a practical, results-oriented format, including interactive, multi-stakeholder panel discussions, partnership announcements, as well as opportunities for participants to showcase their ICT development projects to potential partners and donors. The Youth Connekt hangouts provide an excellent networking platform for leaders from the public, private and financial sectors to meet and forge new partnerships for the future.

The hangouts focus on different themes such as Youth Employment, Entrepreneurship, and Youth Access to Finance; ICT4D, Environment; Investment Promotion.  The hangouts are supported by an active website and social media. Youth Connekt connects youth to opportunities such as skill development, jobs, access to finance, business incubators, mentorships, and internships.

 “This is historic. It’s a dream come true! We’ve been trying to expand the limits of communication and in interaction and we thought that beyond of what we’ve been doing, interacting on radio, on TV, in various meetings we should really make an advanced use of technology to keep in touch with you. The intention here is really to be able to engage everyone, all the young people of this country in shaping their own future.”, the Minister of Youth and ICT, Jean Philbert Nsengimana addressed the Youth, who were watching and participating in the debate live via Google Hangout technology.

 In order to give young people “a seat at the table”, he also highlighted that  we want to be able to use  Twitter, Facebook, YouTube and other social media to be able really to stay in touch as we shape our development agenda and as we increase the contribution of young people to that [Post-2015 development] agenda.”

The topic of the first Youth Connekt Hangout was the role of ICT in creating Smart jobs; the UNDP country Director, Auke Lootsma said that “through the YouthConnekt initiative, we will connect young people to opportunities that exist especially in the private sector, where they can develop their entrepreneurship skills and get jobs ... we’ll be using new technologies like Google Hangout and other social media to bring people together to communicate.”

Youth Connekt Hangout is bi-monthly event taking place on Tuesdays from 4:00 to 5:00PM.

In an increasingly globalized and digitalized world, young people are often the leading innovators need to be equipped with the right skills and training in order to contribute to the development of their societies. Through Youth Connekt, they will be engaged in global policy shaping for sustainable development through information sharing, as the Youth Connekt platform will create new opportunities for young people for skills development, employment, and entrepreneurship in ICT and other sectors.

The hangout also reflects on the Post-2015 Development Agenda to help in defining the future global development framework that will succeed the UN Millennium Development Goals (MDGs).

Click here to watch the full #YouthConnekt Google+ Hangout:http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=npEYBbx1AC8