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Leather training instils high hopes in youth

2021-11-17  Staff Reporter

Leather training instils high hopes in youth
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 Elizabeth Hiyolwa 

 

After the Kavango West Regional Council entered into an agreement with Namibia Community Skills Development Foundation (Cosdef) to offer a 13-week intensive training on leather production, 25 trainee youth on this project are optimistic to bring about change in their communities after completion. 

The training which entails components of leather production, product designs, marketing and mentoring aims to respond to the current market and thus participants are trained on making products such as belts, sandals, key holders and handbags. 

Kapuka Inansia, a trainee from Rupara village said the training has given her an opportunity to gain new skills.

“I am very excited, because I have learned new things. I have learnt how to stitch leather, how to cut leather and how to make designs,“ she stated.

She further stressed that the knowledge she is gaining during the training will make an impact on others as she plans on starting her own business and perhaps offering training to others too.

She also encouraged other youth to always be on the lookout for such projects offered by the government.

Another trainee, Sevita Haihambo indicated that she is optimistic about creating her own products for selling to wider markets.

“I will make my own products and sell to other villages or countries,” she said, adding that she would however request assistance for her start-up capital.

Bernolda Likuwa, a trainee from Ncuncuni added that she also plans on opening her own business in her home village so she can bring about development.

Afas Mbura, the leather craft instructor from Cosdef, highlighted that the trainees are trained to become their own bosses and not to become job seekers. 

The leather products will be placed on online international marketing platforms managed by Cosdef, which will expand the marketing of the products. 

The Chief Community Liason Officer for Rural Services for Kavango West Regional Council, Karl Kangondo narrated that the project is a no walk in the park as it was faced with some challenges. 

“The project workshop building is not yet equipped with the needed equipment, plus the project assistance took longer than expected and the manual sewing machine is not functioning,” he narrated. 

“Supply of local leather is a challenge in Kavango West as there is no single leather processing project. Project members will have to order the processed leather from other regions”, he added.

Kangondo, however, guaranteed that the regional council engaged the Ministry of Urban and Rural Development to avail funds for the procurement of workshop materials for the workshop to be fully operationalised and a delegation from the ministry visited the region at the beginning of October to assess the project before funds can be released. 

Further, the regional council will set monitoring and evaluation systems in place, to ensure the project is conducted in a profitable manner. Products will be taken to different trade fairs and expos for increased marketing opportunities.

Kangondo also assured the project beneficiaries that the council is working hard with the urban ministry to ensure that all outstanding materials for the project are procured and installed in the warehouse for the project to run smoothly.


2021-11-17  Staff Reporter

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