On the heels of launching its Youth Empowered for Success (YES!) initiative last month, The Coca-Cola Africa Foundation (TCCAF) has launched a digital platform which will bolster the initiative’s aim of connecting young people to training, mentoring and employment opportunities.
The YES! initiative, a pan-African empowerment program, aims to empower marginalised youths in six countries through a USD 4.5 million investment from the foundation. By 2020, the goal is to have reached 500,000 youths.
The digital platform intends to provide wider accessibility and greater scale for the programme, offering life skills training, business skills training and access to employment and mentoring for 25,000 young Africans over the next three years.
Designed to support widely-available technology including SMS and voice-based mobile devices, the platform will be available through devices at YES! programme hubs and will ensure inclusive reach for the initiative, providing access to services for young people in remote locations and those with limited literacy skills.
Speaking at the launch, business unit president at Coca-Cola Central, East and West Africa, Kelvin Balogun, said, “The rapid pace of technology adoption across Africa presents significant opportunity for private sector, civil society and government partners to engage with youth in new ways while building the skills and connections that are essential for employment.
“Harnessing the talent and ambition of youth will be essential to Africa fulfilling its long-term potential, and we aim to help support this aspiration through Youth Empowered for Success. The launch of the new YES! digital platform is an important introduction in allowing us to reach more young people across Africa while rapidly scaling the programme as it expands into new countries across the continent.”
Partnering with The Coca-Cola Africa Foundation are companies such as Mercy Corps, Microsoft, Harambee Youth Employment Accelerator and Kuza Biashara.
The platform is already being introduced in Kenya, South Africa and Tunisia and there are future plans for Liberia, Nigeria and Uganda.