Christopher O’Neill of the O`Neill Automatisierung who is also a renowned Rotarian in Germany, has donated start-up kits for at least two potential graduates of Youth Resource Academy (YRA) in Kenema, eastern Sierra Leone. Mr O`Neill made this confidential disclosure last week to the board and management of Fambul Tik e.V., the leading partner of YRA in Europe. It must be noted that students who usually graduate from vocational training institutions in Sierra Leone always find it challenging to start their own enterprises due to lack of start-up resources in a country where public credit finances are hard to come by.
The institute is the youth training offshoot of Youth in Action for Development (YAD) and was established in the year 2018. Currently offering vocational training to more than 200 underprivileged boys and girls from Kenema City and its surroundings, YRA is recorded as the first training institute offering free education to all its students without exception.
YRA was granted permission by the Ministry of Technical and Higher Education in 2018 to operate as a Technical and Vocational Education and Training (TVET) centre in line with the 2004 Education Act and the two strategic pillars of TVET policy adopted by the government of Sierra Leone: Enhancing Access to TVET Programmes and Developing Skills for Jobs.
YRA offers training in diverse professions, including Screen Printing, Catering/Hospitality Management, Dressmaking, Cosmetology, Secretarial/Office Management and ICT. The institute graduates its students in December every year, and the O`Neill`s donation shall be formally presented to deserving candidates at the graduation ceremony.
It must be recalled that Mr O`Neill supported two students in the 2021/2022 academic year in the faculty of catering and cosmetology, respectively. This year’s donation shall complement the efforts of Fambul Tik and YAD to provide more start-up kits for graduates.