A ray of light for Amadé
Around 1,000 adolescents and young people affected by the armed conflict receive modular skills training thanks to Education Cannot Wait and UNICEF.
At 13, Amadé can no longer see well. Since birth, he has had a problem with his left eye. Over time, it has got worse and worse. Sometimes, it hurts so much he can't do anything. But he's a brave man. His visual handicap doesn't stop him from wanting to get on in life. Originally from the security-challenged town of Djibo, just over a year ago, Amadé and his family found a way to flee to Ouahigouya. Because of the problem he has with his eye, this young man has not really been able to go to school.
"When I was much younger, my parents enrolled me in school. At the time, we were still in Djibo. Unfortunately, with my eye problem, I had to stop in CP1. We tried to treat it, but the security situation made it that we couldn't continue," he explains.
This year, Amadé heard about the modular training courses. Very interested, he asked his parents to find out more and then enroll him. Since June 2023, he has been coming to the Ouahigouya farm centre to take the courses. He has already learned about pastry-making and sheep farming. Now, with his teacher, Amadé and his classmates are learning poultry farming.
"We're taught the different ways of feeding chickens and how to take care of them. We even learn how to vaccinate the chickens so they don't get sick. But my favorite thing is sheep farming. I'd like to be able to raise sheep," he says.
This modular training project for adolescents and young people affected by the armed conflict was conceived by UNICEF with funds allocated by Education Cannot Wait (ECW) fund, and implemented in the field by local NGOs such as Children Believe and the Centre Diocésain de Communication (CDC). It covers the Nord and Centre Nord regions. Groups of 40 to 50 students per centre are offered a package of three training courses. The courses cover sewing, mechanics, renewable energy, tiling, poultry farming, juice production, hairdressing, and Amadé's favorite, sheep farming. At the end of their three months' training, the best students will be lucky enough to receive a start-up kit. As for Amadé, he's hoping to be provided with sheep, so that he can launch his cattle-breeding project.
"I'm doing my best to be among the best students. That way, I'll be able to get what I need to start my cattle-breeding project. And I'll be able to help my parents find a solution for my sick eye," he explains.
Amadé has made a positive impression with his consistency in class and his courage. is impressed.
"Since we started this training program, he has never missed a class. When his eye hurts too much, he goes outside until it calms down. I'm impressed by his bravery," his teacher Andréa BELEM says.
Like Amadé, many young people benefit from this training program, some as motivated as others. Latif Ouedraogo, also 13, is one of them. This year, he passed his Certificate of Primary and Elementary Studies (CEPE) exam. Unfortunately, due to a lack of funds, he will not be able to continue to secondary school. When his father heard about these free training courses, he jumped at the chance to enroll his son.
"Here, I've received training in mechanics, renewable energy and tiling. I'm really interested in tiling. While I'm waiting to go back to school, I can learn to do something with my ten fingers," explains Latif.
In the space of three months, some 1,000 students have received various training courses. These training courses enable internally displaced young people and adolescents, host populations, out-of-school children and schoolchildren alike, to acquire new skills that will enable them to earn a living later on. Thanks to these training courses, the children were able to occupy their free time in a healthy way, while learning to do new things.