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Young innovators to design solutions to improve education, training and empowerment


A new challenge calling on young innovators across Zimbabwe to design solutions that will improve education, skills development and training for young people, and empower them to take action on issues that affect them, was launched yesterday.

Winning applicants will contribute to the success of Generation Unlimited, which is a new, ambitious partnership – launched at a high-level event during the 73rd Session of the United Nations General Assembly – aimed at getting every young person into quality education, training or employment by 2030.

The Youth Challenge – which will take place this year in 16 countries worldwide, including Zimbabwe – calls for applications from young people to create solutions that will support the three key pillars of Generation Unlimited: secondary-age education; skills for learning, employability and decent work; and empowerment, with a focus on girls.

Currently in Zimbabwe 78.6% of children transition from Primary to Secondary school education. However only 22.3% proceed to A Level studies,” said UNICEF Representative, Mohamed Ayoya. “This initiative will provide young people with an opportunity to explore alternative pathways to a brighter and productive future that utilizes skills to develop their technology, green economy and leadership skills among others.”

Successful applicants will be invited to take part in a design workshop in Harare in November. Following the workshops, the five most promising ideas will be selected and awarded up to USD 1,000 each in funding and provided with mentoring to support the projects’ implementation.

In spring 2019, shortlisted projects from each country will be submitted to a global judging process. These projects will receive a further USD 20,000 investment, along with a tailored mentorship programme from Generation Unlimited partners to support them to scale.

The challenge in Zimbabwe is being implemented with support from UNICEF, and Boost Fellowship.

With 1.8 billion young people in the world, Generation Unlimited is a dynamic global partnership that draws on the expertise of young people, representatives from governments, multilateral organizations, the private sector and civil society to inspire urgent investment in education, skills training, and empowerment for the rapidly growing global population of adolescents and young people aged between 10 and 24 years old.

Generation Unlimited brings together partners to co-create and support solutions that are proven and have the potential to deliver results at scale, and to develop a platform to share knowledge and learning and provide young people with a space to engage and co-create.

With more than 200 million young people of lower- and upper-secondary school age currently missing out on school, instead of contributing to equitable progress, young people – especially the most disadvantaged – could face futures of compounding deprivation and poverty, unless urgent action is taken.

Generation Unlimited – which contributes to the implementation of the United Nations’ Youth 2030 Strategy – will complement and build on existing programmes that support adolescents and young people.

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Byron Adonis Mutingwende