Vocational training centres graduates venture into enterprise

Minister Machakaire

GRADUATES from vocational training centres in the Midlands province have registered their own companies and some are already running thriving enterprises in line with the Heritage-Based Education 5.0.

Government has implemented a transformative graduate employment creation and development programme with the primary goal of nurturing employment creators as opposed to employment seekers.

Speaking during the Midlands Vocational Training Centres’ graduation ceremony for the year 2023 at Kaguvi Vocational Training Centre in Gweru yesterday, Youth Empowerment, Development and Vocational Training Minister Tino Machakaire said their vision is to produce an empowered youth capable of actively participating in national development through vocational training.

“We are gathered here to witness youth empowerment in the form of vocational training and skills development which is in line with the National Development Strategy 1. I have been informed                                       that some graduates here present                                                                                           have registered their own companies and are already thriving entrepreneurs,” he said. “This is the thrust of the Second Republic that we should promote young people through small enterprises.” 

Minister Machakaire said the vision is in line with the theme of the event: “Empowerment of Youth through Vocational Training and Skills Development towards Vision 2030.”

The graduation was special for the 1 830 students who graduated in engineering, agriculture and applied arts courses. Among the graduates, 793 were female while 1 037 were male. 

Minister Machakaire noted that the number of females taking up vocational training is increasing.

“Through the courses that are offered at vocational training centres, the Ministry aims to reduce unemployment and poverty, especially for those who embrace the knowledge and skills that our centres provide,” he said.

Minister Machakaire said among the mandates of his newly established ministry, they want to provide robust vocational training and skills development programmes that benefit the youth. 

“Let me take this opportunity to thank the President for his visionary leadership and unwavering support for the empowerment of young Zimbabweans. I want to assure you that more VTCs will soon be established in the Midlands province,” he said.

Minister Machakaire said the Government is seized with the fight against drug and substance abuse that has affected mostly youths. 

Government has scaled up the fight against drug and substance abuse through the creation of the National Committee on the elimination of drug and substance abuse, and a technical committee to strategise, coordinate and implement programmes to control the problem.

“The Ministry was tasked to head the sub-committee on demand reduction pillar and it is now in the process of strategising on how to fight against this menace. The girl child has become a victim of early child marriages, gender-based violence and many other social ills,” said Minister Machakaire.

“I call upon all stakeholders here present to make concerted efforts to come up with initiatives that empower the girl child and make her an active participant in the country’s economic activities. It is of paramount importance that we consider those with disabilities in all our enrolments.”

Minister Machakaire commended organisations, development partners and the private sector for supporting the initiative of skills training in the Midlands Province. 

“As partners let us close the gap so as to empower our youth and bring vocational training closer to our communities,” he said.

Minister Machakaire said the Government is working on modernising vocational training centres.

“We need modern equipment and technologies and the private sector and industry should support the Government in its endeavour to empower the youth. I encourage you to be ambassadors and encourage other young people to acquire skills at VTCs,” he said.

“Continue to engage with the ministry for new packages so that young people get access to funding being administered by EmpowerBank. Our ministry will carry out tracer studies to be abreast of your achievements and challenges in the industry.”

The minister challenged the graduates to be professional and adopt best practices in their chosen trades while exploiting avenues availed through his ministry.


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