Developing youth skills for a self-sustainable future

Trainees making local dolls for sale.

By Esther Opade

Love, commitment, encouragement, team building , and showing purpose is what the young people living with HIV/AIDS under the care of Reach Out Mbuya Parish HIV/AIDS Initiative receive from ROM. On Wednesday 24 June 2020 six girls under the Friends’ Forum were trained on how to make AIDS ribbons out of glass beads and local dolls.

With schools currently closed due to COVID-19, the program is an opportunity for the youth to build new skills and that is why ROM has decided to discover the skills in the young people under its care.

Through this program, youths aged between 10 and 18 years old are encouraged to actively and willingly learn how to make handmade ribbons and dolls that will help them earn a living.

The group making the HIV ribbon is composed of six girls belonging to Friends’ Forum group and they are trained by Atimango Margret. According to Margret, this will help them have enough AIDS ribbons in preparation for the World AIDS Day celebrations in December.

For those making the local doll, their trainer Mr. Yamungu Simon Peter insisted that the dolls are made out of the things that are easy to find and locally available resources. He encourages his trainees to be attentively doing this work since they use knitting pins to make the dolls. A positive learning experience is encouraged because it allows the children to develop their skills together and benefit from the immediate reward of seeing how those skills lead to great success.

After the training, the youth are expected to have learned how to make AIDS ribbons out of the glass beads and the local doll. This will equip them with life skills of creativity, self-reliance, and strengthening positive mental health and wellbeing by promoting self-worth, responsible citizens.

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