South Africa: Teens to fly Cape to Cairo in a plane they assembled

By iOL.co.za (MERCURY REPORTER)

An epic adventure in the form of an aviation challenge promoting and supporting innovation, technology and entrepreneurship will see 20 teenagers embark on a Cape-to-Cairo-and-back excursion in a self-assembled Sling-4 aircraft.

The aircraft uses ordinary motor fuel and was built in just three weeks.

The excursion, earmarked to start next month, will see different teams of the 20 teenagers pilot and charter a course that will cut across several African cities and towns, spreading the key messages of an African narrative that started as a dream.

Teen pilot, author and motivational speaker Megan Werner, sparked by her passion to inspire, founded U Dream Global Foundation to uplift, empower, equip and transform the lives of thousands of youth throughout Africa and the world by “dreaming and achieving the impossible as well as succeeding beyond expectations”.

“The challenge has enabled us to take a lot of teenagers from different backgrounds and to teach and equip them with life skills that they can take with them into the future.

“Throughout Africa, we are hoping to do similar initiatives affecting thousands of youths who are the future of the continent,” said Megan.

Megan and various teen co-pilots are now set to chart a course across Africa to visit towns and cities in Namibia, Zimbabwe, Malawi, Tanzania, Kenya, Ethiopia, Eritrea and Egypt, and a return trip that will include Uganda, Rwanda and Zambia.

Pupils assemble the Sling-4 aircraft, which they plan to fly from Cape Town to Cairo and back on an epic journey next month.

Voluntary support for logistical aspects of the flight is being provided by CFS, ExecuJet, Worldfuel and Mike Blyth, the founder of The Airplane Factory – the enterprise that designed and built the original Sling plane series.

Using specially modified, self-made drones, the challenge will be documented on video.

Six teenage pilots will take turns to fly the plane as the challenge moves from country to country.

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These Are The 10 Skills Employers Are Looking For In African Youths


By Andrew Christian


According to the World Bank, youths account for 60 percent of the jobless in Africa. In North Africa, the unemployment rate is at 25 percent, with even larger numbers in countries such as the DRC, Senegal, South Africa, and Nigeria. There are about 200 million people between 15 and 24 in the continent, making it the largest population of young people in the world. In most African countries, youth unemployment occurs at steam twice stronger than that for adults, according to the AfDB, with young women feeling the sting of joblessness more than the male lot.

But African leaders are doing all they can to battle unemployment. In Senegal, 200,000 people join the labour market each year, which is the outcome of the program launched by President Macky Sall in February 2013 to create 30,000 jobs within a year and possibly, 300,000 by 2017. With financing from the African Development Bank, self-employment programs for youth and women are also ongoing in Senegal.

Africa’s unemployment statistics don’t include those in vulnerable employment and those who are underemployed in informal regards. Truth be told, most young Africans land jobs, but not in places that pay them well, help them develop their skills or provide a measure of job security – hence, underemployed. According to the Washington-based think tank Brookings Institution, under-employment isn’t a problem serious enough to warrant greater attention, since it masks the reality in countries that post low unemployment rates. In the DRC, Ghana, Mali, Rwanda, Uganda, Senegal, Mali, Malawi, and Ethiopia, more than 70 percent of the youths are either self-employed or contributing to family work.

The figures can be scary, and governments can be blamed for the situation. But what part do African youths have to play in landing the dream job? Of course, it’s more than just sitting at home and waiting for your president to sign agreements with international employers so you would have a six-figure salary. While there are many untapped opportunities in Africa, the professional social network.

LinkedIn has compiled a list of skills that have the most job-landing potential in 2019. Who better does it than the base of experts itself? Rather than stressing different problems – which as of now looks futile – we need to recognise that tech companies such as Facebook, Google, IBM, Apple, and others are on the lookout for SKILLS. If they weren’t, then they wouldn’t ask job seekers to not bank on their college degrees. Yes, to get a job in most of these companies today, you don’t need to have a degree. You need to have skill.

The guys at LinkedIn discovered that employers nowadays are on the lookout for workers with both soft and hard technical skills, and went on to match them with free LinkedIn Learning courses for potential candidates. So, they have taken it as a point of duty to help out in evening by getting to know the skills that make you a job magnet.

Five Most In-Demand Soft Skills Of 2019

1.Time Management

There’s a popular African cliche which says that time is money and that it waits for no man. Or is it African? Well, one thing’s for sure, employers want to hire people that know how well to manage their time, especially in their job areas. There is a cornucopia of books out there that teach you how to be effective with time. Meanwhile, here are free courses that LinkedIn want you to take.

2. Adaptability

Take it from me, employers don’t want to have to put up with persons who would complain about a new job months after they get hired. All job roles are not the same, and that pretty much tells you that you need to discipline your mind and body to adapt to the dream job situation you find yourself in. Nagging doesn’t help – at least not often. To get into a job environment in one thing; to fit into it is another.

3. Collaboration

It could be a wrong guess, but there is hardly any CV today that doesn’t have a section which says that the candidate is a team player. While this has become rather too monotonous, the moral lesson is that job seekers need to learn how to collaborate. Most employers don’t want you being a lone wolf or solitary worker who doesn’t give a heck what other employees think. In most work environments, it is all about teamwork.

4. Persuasion

This is not some Mother Confessor type of persuasion, neither does it have jack to do with hypnosis. The power of persuasion is truly a skill, one with which you convince who to do what at then and so. There are startups out there who have the best ideas but don’t have the ability to persuade investors to fund those ideas. Not only is this a critical job skill, but a must-have if you are ever going to make people see reasons with you in other life aspects.

5. Creativity

This isn’t meant to scare the barnacles out of you, but, very soon, robots will start doing your job. But in as much as these metal mashups can perform certain tasks better than humans, they cannot be as creative as. Take a look at all the great ideas making money all over the world. Aren’t they all from the stables of creative thinkers? Employers would rather hire creative talent than have to pay someone who would just follow directions.

Five Most In-Demand Hard Skills In 2019

1. UX Design

With websites launching from every nook and cranny, people are going to need UX designers to help create quality, spellbinding content that will put smiles on their customers’ faces. User Experience is not cakewalk nowadays, but thanks to the establishment of tech hubs and computer centres, these skills can be learned for free.

2. People Management

There are different kinds of people in this world, and when dealing with customers, employers would rather have a people person by their side. Why else did Bobby Axelrod hire a shrink for his stock trading company? By the way, that’s from the movie series Billions. People, when managed effectively, turn not just customers, but assets to a company. That’s why companies need people managers.

3. Analytical Reasoning

Analytical reasoning refers to the ability to look at information, be it qualitative or quantitative in nature, and discern patterns within the information. It involves deductive reasoning with no specialised knowledge, such as: comprehending the basic structure of a set of relationships; recognizing logically equivalent statements; and inferring what could be true or must be true from given facts and rules.

4. Artificial Intelligence

Need we say much? AI is unsurprisingly the number two on this list. If you have a knack for advanced science and skills to match your drive, then you are the hot cake companies are jousting in the arena for. Take a look at 27-year-old Silas Adekunle from Nigeria who is using his knowledge in robotics to land deals with Amazon and Apple, while selling his products MekaMon in Europe, Asia, Canada, and the UAE.

5. Cloud Computing

The most in-demand skill of 2019, cloud computing is the practice of using a network of remote servers hosted on the Internet to store, manage, and process data, rather than a local server or a personal computer. Knowledge of the way this works will most likely snag you a six-figure dollar monthly salary.


Source weetracker


Disabled youth gifted with reading skills in Uganda

By Titus Kakembo

Instead of Father Christmas giving them wrapped biscuits, sweets or soda this time round they were equipped with reading skills and morals.

Last weekend youths in Central Uganda were given a rare Christmas gift at Ntinda School for the deaf.

Instead of Father Christmas giving them wrapped biscuits, sweets or soda this time round they were equipped with reading skills and morals.

“Consider your selves lucky to be among the chosen 130 youths in this camp,” stated Annett Babirye, a facilitator. “It is time you approached life aggressively because there are no miracles in real life.”

“Look at my physical state,” Babirye raised eyebrows shoving a pair of palm less arms at the audience. “I was born with all my limbs but lost them after suffering from measles at 18 months of age. As if that was not enough…

Babirye paused as sighs of awe were sucked in by the visually shocked youth and other facilitators.

“As if that was not enough, my mother abandoned me and I was taken to stay with my grandmother,” recounts Babirye looking. “My real life is stranger than fiction. Because that is when I learned to always challenge the challenger.”

Taking a second glance at youth with different impairments, Babirye tipped them to be ready to be called derogative names like: Kasiru or Bubu (deaf) and Kiwuduwudu (limbless) but stay focused.

“Do you know that it is not only palms I am missing but a foot too?” confided Babirye. “Fortunately these conditions are no hindrance to my academic achievement, social interaction and life in general.”

Talking about her marital status Babirye cautioned the youth against emulating lifestyles that are glamourized by social media, movies and society pages in tabloids.

“It was after I finished my education that I got married and gave birth to four children,” said Babirye.

“Do you know that there are thousands out there wishing they had the opportunities you have? So use every second of your school life preciously. Mind the people you interact with.”

Do not let those bodaboda or Sugar Daddies entice you with a free ride, fancy gifts and Rolex in exchange for sex.

“You might end up with HIV, an unwanted pregnancy and a checkered future,” said Babirye.

The Cheshire Uganda Communications and advocacy manager, Josephine Namirimu surprised the youths with a pageantry of ladies on wheel chairs and showcased others dancing ballet.

“The trick is to first appreciate and accept what you are,” stressed Namirimu. “Because there is nobody out there, who is going to do it for you.”

Namirimu reminded the participants that like everyoneelse, they too have a right to: education, healthcare, parents, food, an identity and love.

“By the way being disabled can be a blessing in disguise in Uganda,” revealed Namirimu. “If you are a girl the education ministry adds you some points to get to university unlike other counterparts vying for the same institutions and being disabled adds you another.”

The Ministry of Education has a provision for enabling people with disabilities get to university which requires you to score ten points at Higher Certificate of Education and get two principal passes.

“This makes it easier especially for girls who have another point as a result of affirmative action,” said Namirimu. “Let being a girl or disabled become a blessing by exploiting the available opportunities. Let there be no barriers in life. Lean to voice what is stressing you.”

Team work can enable everyone achieve their goal, the disabled inclusive, stressed Namirimu.

“What is needed is self-esteem,” suggested Namirimu. “You have several opportunities out there waiting to be utilised.”

This articles was first published on New Vision

Uganda: Bobi Wine to youths: Get national ID and vote

During his hugely attended Kyarenga Concert at his One Love Beach in Busabala, in the city outskirts, singer and politician Robert Kyagulanyi aka Bobi Wine urged youth to get national IDs and vote.

Wine said that the only way young people can stop being spectators in the electoral process is by voting. “Get a national ID. We are only left with two years and we shall show them what we are capable of come 2021.

Whatever we do minus getting an ID does not count,” he told cheering fans. The Kyarenga concert was long awaited after police thwarted it on two occasions when Namboole stadium was set to host it. There were mammoth crowds draped in red, which is the colour of Bobi’s People Power movement.

The singer rapped the government on the deteriorating education and health services. MPs Paul Mwiru, Francis Zaake, Asuman Basalirwa, Joseph Sewungu and Mukasa Mbidde were present.

Source – Independent

Uganda: Police clash with Kawempe youth over Museveni cash.

Police on Wednesday afternoon fired bullets in a scuffle with youth from Kawempe after a failed meeting to discuss ways of benefiting from the money recently pledged by State House.

Police reports that the youth had not been cleared to organize a meeting which forced them to block it.
“I am requesting that you go through the right procedure of writing to the Regional Police Commander and area officer in charge. No one will stop you from getting the money,” a police officer told the youths.

The youths were, however, not satisfied with this answer and went on chanting ‘It is our money, give it to us’.

“The president gave out Shs2.5 billion to all the youth in Kampala and every division had to get a share of shs500 million. We have gathered her to discuss how we can get this money and put it to good use. However, Police have blocked us,” one of the youth lamented.

Soon after, tear gas was fired and bullets fired to disperse the protesting youths. A number of youths were violently arrested and put onto a waiting police patrol truck.

The police patrol truck, however, crashed and overturned as it whisked the suspects to Wandegeya police station. The apprehended suspects used the opportunity and escaped from the police men. There were no casualties.

Source – Monitor

Uganda: How the renewable energy industry can help solve Africa’s youth unemployment

Africa is on the verge of an unemployment crisis portending profound economic, political, and social ramifications. But the crisis can be averted, and one of the solutions may be as simple as turning on the lights.

Every year, some 13 million young people look for work in Africa, but only about three million of them find jobs. The continent’s youth population is projected to double by 2050, to 840 million, and yet Africa’s schools and universities are not producing enough graduates with the technical skills to succeed in the workplace of tomorrow. Although the African Development Bank (AfDB) hopes to create 25 million new jobs within a decade through its Jobs for Youth in Africa initiative, it is not immediately clear where those opportunities will come from.

But one industry is poised to fill the jobs gap: the renewable energy industry.

This industry – and especially small-scale power generation like rooftop solar panels and green mini-grids – has the potential to power African employment growth. In fact, we calculate that up to one-fifth of the AfDB’s jobs commitment could be met by economic activity linked to the off-grid solar industry alone – through direct and indirect employment.

Worldwide, job growth in the renewables industry is booming, while employment in traditional power generation is shrinking (primarily owing to the closure of coal plants). African countries should expect a similar trend as they work to achieve universal electricity access. To meet this goal, the AfDB estimates that roughly 40% of the continent’s new connections – 75 million households – will need to come from off-grid solutions.

While investment in decentralized renewables in Africa is increasing, more than 600 million people in Sub-Saharan Africa still lack access to electricity. Connecting these customers, most of whom live in rural areas, will require a huge number of skilled workers and entrepreneurs. Although off-grid energy demand has the potential to create more than 4.5 million jobs globally, according to the International Renewable Energy Agency, only about 76,000 renewable-energy jobs have been created in all of Africa, less than 1% of the 10.3 million globally.

If managed and supported properly, Africa’s renewables revolution could create jobs far beyond the energy sector itself. Once Africa’s consumers have access to electricity, they will want home appliances and other goods, which will generate demand for new services and create even more opportunities for skilled workers.

Moreover, electrification can help stimulate growth in small- and medium-sized enterprises, which suffer disproportionately when power is expensive or unreliable. With half of all African businesses owning or sharing a generator and citing electricity as a major constraint, decentralized renewables could keep Africa’s SMEs productive and their workers employed. Off-grid solutions would also enable the launch of new businesses, especially in agriculture, and shorten their path to profitability.

Expanded access to renewable energy would benefit African countries in many other ways, too, such as by reducing poverty, improving gender equality, enhancing sanitation, and limiting greenhouse-gas emissions. As former United Nations Secretary-General Ban Ki-moon often said, affordable and clean energy “will be essential” to meeting nearly all of the objectives set by the UN Sustainable Development Goals.

But achieving universal access will require a trained workforce, and at the moment, Africa suffers from a dearth of capable human capital. Energy companies like ours – M-KOPA has over 800 full-time employees, for example – are already finding it difficult to hire “job-ready” talent for the renewables sector.

In nearly every region, African countries have been slow to ensure that the next generation of energy workers is ready; capacity building has been an afterthought. This must change, and quickly. Africa’s clean-energy future will require many skilled technicians, and governments need to start training them now. Public-private partnerships, like Schneider Electric’s Access to Energy program, have trained many electricians globally, but only a fraction have been in Africa.

Two years ago, Akinwumi A. Adesina, the AfDB’s president, lamented that many African countries were “essentially training our youths for the jobs of yesterday, not the jobs of the future.” Now is the time to reverse this pattern. With dedicated support from governments, industry, civil society, and multilateral agencies, decentralized renewables can do more than illuminate a continent; they can also put it to work.

Mugo Kibati is Chairman of M-KOPA Solar. Gilles Vermot Desroches is Senior Vice President for Sustainability at Schneider Electric

Source – Uganda Business News