Assisting students and graduates in finding employment has always been a big challenge, and has become even more difficult in the times of the Covid-19 pandemic. Watu kwa Watu is trying to assist them in a variety of ways including, among others:
(1) Funding additional, more specialized training, which makes them more competitive on the job market (This was the case in particular with the Nursing students, and in three cases has helped to secure employment. It was also the case for the Architecture student, who is presently working as well);
(2) Funding their unpaid apprenticeships with potential employers (This was a case with the Architecture student, that was fully successful; and with the Road Building Machine Operating student, that was not successful) ;
(3) Paying for additional exams and licenses (This was a case with the Financial Management, Banking and Accountancy students. This was successful in two cases, for another two we still need to wait to see);
(4) Paying for the purchase of uniforms, tools and other required supplies (This was a case for four Nursing students, for three Electrical Engineering students, for the Architecture student and for the Road Building student) ;
(5) Paying for the work permits in cases of employment abroad (Three of the supported students from Western Kenya are currently working and studying in Uganda, and they needed work permits) ;
(6) Paying for the living and settling down expenses at the beginning of the employment, until the receipt of the first salary (Three Nursing students and one Electrical student).
(7) Using our personal contacts to connect the graduating students with the potential employers (The case of the student of Aquatic Sciences and Fisheries Management). Responding to these challenges requires a lot of communication with the students, potential sponsors, and other parties, and represents additional fund-raising needs.
We are very happy however to be able to note, that, in general, we have been quite successful despite a difficult job market environment of the Covid-19 pandemic period.
Below are few examples of the former students, who have been supported by us, now on their jobs.