From 20th to 22st January 2019, thirteen (13) Youth Leaders from 13 UEM member churches met in Dar es Salaam, Tanzania. The meeting aims firstly, at evaluating how far the recommendations of the Afra 2017 especially those proposed by youth pre-assembly have been implemented. Secondly, it also aims at initiating the African Youth Network which will help youth to share their experience and talents despite the distance that separate them. The meeting was organized by UEM Africa regional office and invited participants from the following churches: CBCA, EPR, EAR, ELCT/KAD, ELCT/NWD, ELCT/ECD, ELCT/ NED, ELCB, ELCRN, ECC and RCSA. All participants had time to report and share experience related to youth Income generating activities (Entrepreneurship projects) as done in their respective member churches.
In his words of introduction and opening the meeting, the UEM program officer in the regional office reminded the participants how far the implementation regarding the 2017 AfRA recommendations don by UEM. He mentioned various supports to member churches, trainings and workshops for youth in relation to entrepreneurship. At the end of the workshop, it was realized that they successful stories of youth’s income generating activities. These include: dairy goats and cow production (multiplication method), fruit tree nursery project, poultry production project, vegetable and fruits production, embroidery project, fish and rabbit production project, soap making project.
Despite the remarkable success, some challenges were mentioned:
In response to the above mentioned issues, the following recommendations were stated:
As stated earlier in the objectives of the meeting, a network of the youth was needed. Therefore, youth leaders established a Youth network named as African Youth United in Mission (AYUM). This network will unite youth in Africa region and facilitate them to share talents, resources and connect them together irrespective their distance and diversities in member churches. It will be led by a team of five youth leaders who will also work on the document that will explain how the network will work.
By Zakaria Mnkai-Program Officer, UEM