In Nairobi, the city dubbed the Silicon Savannah, youth employment initiatives are more likely to focus on emerging technology sectors than traditional trades. One company, Nairo Bits, brands itself as a Digital Design School and leverages the technological savvy of youth in Nairobi's informal settlements to have a direct impact on livelihoods. The design school equips youth with knowledge and skills in web design, IT, multimedia, and entrepreneurship. The curriculum also incorporates character development and life skills that increase chances of employment. Another organization, Akira Chix, empowers the next generation of female technologists with the technical skills to develop innovative solutions to address Africa's pressing challenges. The group provides mentorship and outreach programming to increase the positive impact of women in their community.
Whether through industries on the forefront of innovation or through fields that draw on traditional craftsmanship and arts, companies, non-profit organizations and government institutions all have a role to play in fighting off potentially debilitating youth unemployment. Check out more of the discussion on work, leverage and leadership for poor urban youth on URB.im and contribute your thoughts.