President Yoweri Kaguta Museveni will set up common user facilities equipped with machines that will be used by the beneficiaries of the Presidential Initiative on Skilling the Girl/Boy Child (PISGBC) to make their products at a small fee, which in turn they will sell to earn a living.
This was revealed yesterday by Mr. Moses Byaruhanga, the Senior Presidential Advisor In charge of Political Mobilization while delivering his speech during the showcasing ceremony of products made by the trainees of Subway Skilling Center.
This skilling center is one of the nine (9) centers spread across the five (5) divisions of Kampala city, under the PISGBC project which President Museveni initiated to uplift the livelihoods of underprivileged youth in the city through skilling.
Mr. Byaruhanga who represented the State House Comptroller, Ms. Jane Barekye, said the President will set up the common user facilities in different parts of the city.
The Presidential Advisor further urged the learners to continue producing good quality products which are of world standard and assured them that the government will get them the market for those products.
Concerning the issue of start-up capital, Mr. Byaruhanga promised to discuss the matter with the President to forge a way forward.
He also promised to request His Excellency the President to permit the beneficiaries to create their own Emyooga SACCO where the government will inject money to be used in boosting their work (businesses).
Mr. Byaruhanga also appreciated President Museveni, Ms. Barekye, and Dr. Faith Katana Mirembe, the Special Presidential Assistant for Education and Skilling and the Head of the project for ensuring that the project is a success.
Dr. Katana commended President Museveni for transforming the youth who had been overtaken by criminal acts such as theft and drug abuse into useful and productive citizens through skilling.
On the other hand, Dr. Katana cautioned the trainees against backsliding into crime, saying that one Mr. Sulaiman Kimuli, a former criminal who belonged to the Kikankane group and his team opened up an office that would handle them.
She further urged them to always believe in God and live a righteous life.
Dr. Patrick Byakatonda, the Director of the Directorate of Industrial Training (DIT) informed the learners that following their six months of free training, they are going to sit for level 1 exams and they will subsequently receive a certificate from DIT that is equivalent to O ‘Level’s Uganda Certificate of Education (UCE).
The director also thanked the President for investing in human resources through skilling, which he said is vital in the development of the country.
The Kampala Resident City Commissioner (RCC), Ms. Aminah Lukanga advised the beneficiaries to put the acquired skills into good use by starting their businesses to improve their livelihoods.
Ms. Rona Kamahoro Natukunda, the administrator of Subway Skilling Center revealed that they recruited 253 trainees, comprising 196 girls and 57 boys who were trained for six months in different vocational disciplines free of charge.
She noted that the center offers five courses which include; Embroidery, Knitting, Shoe making/ leather design, Bakery, and weaving.
Some of the beneficiaries appreciated President Museveni for initiating a project that has since changed their lives for the better.
Kakuru Arthur, 30, and resident of Namulanda village, Bweyogerere in Kampala said in 2021 he traveled via a lorry transporting bananas from Bushenyi to Kampala, searching for a job.
While in Kampala, he used to sleep on the veranda of one of the buildings in Centenary Park, and during the day, he would carry luggage for passengers coming out of taxis.
Whenever he earned some money, Kakuru noted that he would squander it in night bars.
Fortunately, one day as he delivered goods to the residence of one of his customers, he saw an advert for a PISGBC project on TV where he picked interest.
Kakuru said he managed to secure a slot at the Subway center where he undertook a shoe-making course.
The beneficiary stated that after six months of training, he is now able to make shoes, belts, ladies’ and men’s bags, laptop bags, and others. He disclosed that currently, he is currently earning money from his products.