While technical education is increasing through the TVET colleges, there is a gap in proper industrial exposure and internship. So first, we designed an 18-month programme through the Simba Foundation that could offer an internship scheme to young people to become technically efficient. And in this way by giving them a skill and exposure in a practical setting, they can go out and earn a living.
Secondly, we realized that an internship programme at our assembly plant is not going to absorb all the potential students. So we had to extend it and attract new partner. This is where we realized the underrated potential that the Higher Education Loans Board has. To be honest, we did not know initially that besides offering loans to the under privileged and most deserving students, HELB has put in place proper systems of financial management, disbursement, and loan recovery. This greatly reduced our headache literally in trying to think through how we can administer our programme in a sustainable manner. Through the partnership with HELB, we have so far, a total of 210 graduates who have gone through our programme.
HELB identifies the students through their expansive database, disburses the money they need to go through the programme and offers us accountability reports for the entire programme at a click of a button. Now this is a major relief to any donor out there because you do not need to start your own system to manage such a programme.