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Youth empowered under ‘Ujuzi Manyatani’ along border of warring communities

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It was pomp and colour as several youth and women, both reformed warriors and form four leavers, graduated at Masol Northern Rangelands Trust Conservancy along the remote border of West Pokot and Turkana counties after completing three-months short courses.

The NRT has partnered with the United States Agency for International Development (USAID) in order to promote equipping of residents living in the marginalized areas of West Pokot among other counties with knowledge to pursue alternative sources of livelihood.

Youth among them women from Masol area within West Pokot county have benefit from the training dubbed “Ujuzi Manyatani”, a concept aimed at empowering the locals with life skills at the Lakipia North Technical Training and Vocational Institute.

Kadir Boru, NRT West Regional Director handing over tools of work to one of the graduants at Masol Pokot Central. PHOTO: STEPHEN AENGWO

Kadir Boru the NRT West Regional Director said program targeted pastoralist communities and geared toward shifting their mindsets into other beneficial, profitable and sustainable activities.

He said community members undergo short courses like catering, electric and solar installation, tailoring among other courses.

“So far I have seen several beneficiaries have reformed and even some warriors have quit banditry,” Boru said.

Peter Nguno the NRT coordinator on Ujuzi Manyatani noted that since the introduction of the short courses and trainings, he has seen great improvement and change of mindset especially from among those coming from warring communities.

What’s more, Nguno says they have brought on board reformed warriors to be part of the initiative.

Through partnership with Laikipia North Technical Training Institute, Nguno said he has seen several awarded with certificates and noted that there was need for other technical institutions to offer affordable, short-term courses to the marginalized communities in the country if they are to realize development in the region.

“As an organization, we will extend the Ujuzi Manyatani to other areas that has been marginalized and we thank USAID for partnering with us,” Nguno added.

Peter Nguno NRT Ujuzi Manyatani coordinator addressing graduants at Masol conservancy in Sigor. PHOTO: STEPHEN AENGWO

The graduants promised to bring change to the society even as they appreciate being accorded a fresh start in life defined by conflict. They were also given tools of work such as sewing machines and electrical appliances.

Krop Losili, one of the beneficiaries, thanked Ujuzi Manyatani initiative for considering them adding that they have been given a lifeline within the community.

“I am happy that apart from being awarded a certificate, I have also been given assortment of tools to help me directly do my electrical and solar installation that I was trained on,” said Losili

Assistant County Commissioner Sigor Erick Okacha applauded NRT for the training noting that the organization has contributed immensely to the prevailing peace along the West Pokot-Turkana border.

“NRT immensely helped us in the campaign of voluntarily disarmament for the last two years where rangers from the community do regular patrols within the conservancy” said Okacha.



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