- Social Innovation Fellowship
The aim of the KIVUMWI Youth Project is to work in collaboration with the KIVUMWI cooperative to increase its capacity to train and employ people in the village of Mwika in the Kilimanjaro Region of Tanzania, with a particular focus on the plight of underemployed local youth. Though they make up a much larger portion of the population than in more developed countries, youth in Tanzania struggle with an education system which is mediocre at best, and moreover is inaccessible to many beyond the primary level. Once they leave school, youth have few economic opportunities. KIVUMWI is an extremely unusual organization in that one of its primary aims is to offer youth training, a livelihood, and, should they choose to join, membership in the cooperative. The capacity of the group, however, is extremely low due lack of resources and a competitive business environment. Currently, many of the youth who train with the cooperative leave after 2-3 years rather than staying on as full members. The aim of the project is therefore to determine strategies to overcome economic challenges in addition to offering training and consultation on matters related to the internal organization of the cooperative. These two aims are both inseparable and positively correlated. Achieving them requires fully utilizing the human potential of the cooperative through democratic, inclusive brainstorming and decision-making, and where necessary, seeking out outside expertise.