By KBC Reporter
At least 10,000 beneficiaries will be picked for the KCB Foundation-sponsored 2017 High School and 2Jiajiri scholarship programs in a recruitment process that kicked off Thursday.
Of these opportunities, 240 will go to high school students who sat for the 2016 Kenya Certificate of Primary Examinations (KCPE) while more than 10,000 slots will be reserved for vocational training through the 2Jiajiri program.
The Foundation said at least 8000 of the 2jiajiri beneficiaries will be recruited through its network of partners, adding that in the coming year, it will be additional strategic partnerships to drive the Ksh50 billion 2Jiajiri program.
Under the High School scholarship program which caters for qualified but needy primary school levers, the Foundation has set aside 40 slots for students with disability (physical, visual and hearing). The recruitment will bring to total 1,140 the number of students enrolled in secondary schools under the KCB scholarships. Out of this number, 120 are persons with disabilities.
The 2jiajiri program is a skills development and job creation program that seeks to catalyse employment and wealth creation among existing informal sector entrepreneurs and the youth through vocational training in the areas of Construction, Automobile Engineering, Domestic Skills, Beauty,Personal care and Agribusiness.
KCB Foundation Executive Director said the Bank is looking at scaling up its scholarship programme to deepen its youth empowerment agenda. “Our focus is on lifting the fortunes for the millions of youths in East Africa. At least 92% of unemployed youth have formal education but do not possess any skills that are relevant to employers and enterprises. This state of affairs leaves Kenyan youth unable to find jobs and unable to become self-employed through small scale, start-up business ventures. It is estimated that 1 in 5 Kenyan youth are unemployed, “said Ms Mwangi.
The 2Jiajiri program has so far trained 2,234 beneficiaries in 114 vocational training institutions in 20 counties since the launch earlier this year. In the year 2017, the 2Jiajiri scholarships will be extended to other counties.
KCB sees 2jiajiri as its deliberate investment towards the fulfilment of the role of youth in achieving the 2030 sustainable development agenda, which seeks to end extreme poverty through imparting skills that will help the youth become the next generation of entrepreneurs.
To be eligible for the 2jiajiri scholarship, applicants should: have a national I.D. card, a valid certificate of good conduct, the ability to read and write Swahili or English, attend training in participating institutions in the county of residence, contribute a proportion of the school fees and must be within one of the three categories (Business Owner, Apprentice or Skiller).The application deadline is Tuesday, December 20, 2016. Shortlisted candidates will be invited for interviews in January 2017. Persons living with disabilities are encouraged to apply.
For the High School scholarships, interested applicants should have completed their KCPE in 2016 in a public primary school and have an admission notification to a public national/ provincial/ county secondary school. In addition to this, they must also have attained the prescribed county cut off marks and come from a needy background.
“These scholarships are meant to ease the burden of financing secondary education for parents or guardians of needy and bright pupils while supporting Kenya’s push for affordable and quality education,” said Ms Mwangi. “There is need to relook the current policies and re-introduce vocational training as part of the curriculum in order to train young people on various skills set that are needed to enter the work force.