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A graduate receives her start-up kit after completing a Tailoring course.                                         ©GECPD

Are you in Galkayo, Puntland or somewhere else in Somalia? Do you operate a metal garage, wood workshop, garment production factory or simply have an office that would require a secretary? If you answer Yes, then guests will definitely be knocking your door soon. It would be one or more of the 82 girls and boys who graduated with various skills from GECPD Vocational Skills Training Center at a Joint Graduation Ceremony on 9th October 2017.

The event marked with joy, pomp and colour saw the girls and boys awarded certificates after completing 6-month courses in Tailoring and Garment Making (37 girls), Carpentry and Joinery (16 boys), Welding and Metal Fabrication (10 boys) and Computer and Secretarial skills (19 girls). The courses included both theory and practical lessons fashioned on the apprenticeship model of training.

The skills training program implemented by GECPD with the financial support of UNHCR and Spazio Solidale was conducted between February and September 2017.The objective was to equip the girls and boys in Galkayo with employable skills to enhance their self-reliance given the loss of livelihoods in the recent drought that hit Somalia following failure on Gu and Dayr rain seasons in 2016. Beneficiaries of the program include girls and boys from both IDP and host community families in Galkayo.

During the event, the graduands exhibited various items they had produced during the practical lessons which were later handed over to them as part of their send off package. They include different sizes and designs of shirts, skirts and dresses; metallic doors, windows, cupboards, tables, chairs and beds. Besides, the graduands were also handed start-up toolkits that would enable them to earn some income and build their experience practising as freelance craftsmen as they await absorption into the job market.

Some of the recent graduates in Galkayo gather inside the Galkayo youth, sports and Resource Center Hall for a photo to celebrate their success. © GECPD

Speaking during the event, UNHCR Galkayo Sub-Office Program Associate Ahmed Abdulahi Farah, noted that many youth had resorted to social debauchery as a result of lack of constructive engagement. He urged the authorities and communities to support efforts to protect and rehabilitate such youth by creating and offering them opportunities for constructive engagement.  “The youth should feel wanted and welcome in the community and by the government. For us (UNHCR) and GECPD we have done our part by equipping them with these marketable skills and giving them the start-up kits”, he said.

Ahmed also encouraged the graduands to remain focused and committed to attaining their ambitions and goals in life. “This is the beginning of your new journey in life. I am sure the skills you have acquired is what our job market needs and certainly you  will get where they can work.”

Other speakers at the event were Puntland Youth Association Chairman Aweys Ahmed, MOWDAFA Mudug Regional Coordinator Deeqa Warsame and MoLYS Mudug Regional Coordinator Mohamed Salwe.


One of the Carpentry graduates presenting what he made after six months of training               © GECPD


The Tailoring, Carpentry and Welding courses were supported under the UNHCR funded Community Based GBV Prevention, Response and Self-Reliance for IDPs in North Mudug project. The project which runs from January to December 2017 also provides unconditional multi-sectoral cash transfers to 1000 drought affected families and conditional cash for core relief items for 1,200 displaced families. The project also provides medical and psycho-social support to 100 GBV survivors, conditional cash transfer for 130 survivors and women at risk of livelihood related GBV and unconditional livelihood support for 74 persons living with disabilities. The project will further promote access to renewable energy for IDPs through provision of 1000 solar lanterns, maintenance and repair of 100 solar flood lights in IDP settlements in Galkayo.


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