Likoni Youth Empowerment Centre
Hatua prepares youth to thrive in Kenya’s workforce by providing promising, low-income students with access to high school and university education, career guidance and professional networks.
Worldwide one in three youth do not have the opportunity to continue their education past primary school. As a result many end up trapped in a cycle of poverty that deprives them of life’s most basic needs.
In Kenya, and around the world, even low income youth who do complete their education often lack connections that can help them take their first step into a professional career. Hatua works on the Coast of Kenya to address these challenges by building a network of opportunity for high potential, low income youth.
How We Work
In order for youth to excel they need quality education throughout primary, secondary, and university schooling. They need resume building experiences while in school and connections to a professional network to help them find career opportunities after graduation. Hatua provides youth with these essential opportunities.
We identify high potential youth who would otherwise drop out of school after 8th grade and provide them with scholarships to attend both high school and university. Throughout our beneficiaries academic careers we supplement their formal education with mentoring on life skills and career guidance. After high school we work with our students to develop their leadership skills and help them gain work experience by serving as peer mentors in high schools throughout their community. When our students begin university we pair each with a local professional working in their field of interest. These professionals volunteer as career coaches, helping our students find internships and build networks that will help them launch their own careers.
Our model is simple, we reach youth during the most formative years of their lives and provide support that transforms their future prospects, from trying to survive with no credentials, no connections and no opportunities, to instead becoming university graduates, ready to work, earn, and contribute to Kenya’s growth. It’s a total transformation- from poverty to professional careers.
We measure Hatua’s impact based on the employment rate and increased income of our alumni compared to how much they would likely be earning if they had dropped out of school. In 2016, 10 years after Hatua began sponsoring students in school, we graduated our first class from university. 100% are now employed or engaged in internships and earning 4x the average income of youth who drop out of school. In 2017 we are sponsoring a total of 353 students, 19 of whom will graduate from college this year, increasing our number of alumni to 34.
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