Press Release —Global April 29, 2021

Diaspora Skills Transfer in Technical and Vocational Education and Training (TVET) and Youth Empowerment

Tubi

Kigali – IOM, the International Organization for Migration is launching a project to support the development of Rwanda’s TVET sector, by engaging Rwandan diaspora in Europe to transfer their knowledge and skills.

Students and trainers from the eight colleges, known as Integrated Polytechnic Regional Colleges (IPRCs), will develop proposals in the fields of agriculture, Information and Communications Technology (ICT), mechanical and electrical engineering and energy. The mission of the project and IPRCs involved is to provide technical and vocational training to empower students and enhance their opportunities for career advancement and success to contribute to the national and global economy.

Ten projects have been selected by the Rwanda Polytechnic (RP) in coordination with the Ministry of Foreign Affairs and International Cooperation (MINAFFET) and IOM. Projects were given financial support to allow the proposed activities to start.

The project is also designed to engage Rwandan diaspora professionals living and working in Europe. The ten winners of will be paired with qualified diaspora professionals to develop and implement their business ideas in Rwanda.

As part of its efforts to enhance diaspora engagement, the Government of Rwanda co-signed the Regional Ministerial Forum on Labour Migration (RMFM) Communique and Call to Action (2020-2023), which identifies “the role of diasporas as crucial actors for the development of the countries as well as in assisting migrant workers and protecting their rights in vulnerable situations”. Rwanda considers its citizens abroad as a relevant and integral constituency, recognizing the vital role Rwandan diaspora play in the country’s political and socio-economic development.

One of the winners of the 10 most innovative proposals, Obed Nyibizi – who has developed an online ticketing system to purchase tickets for events and bus tickets - expressed his gratitude to IOM and the government for the support offered to the local youth.

“Thanks to this grant, I will be able to request for a business license at the competent authority and move from the prototype stage to the implementation stage” he said. “I am looking forward to the diaspora professionals coming to Rwanda so that we can exchange skills and knowledge in the ICT sector” he added.
The Minister of State in charge of ICT and TVET, Claudette Irere, during the outreach campaign to diaspora said, Rwandans living in the diaspora must take hold of the opportunity the project brings.

While addressing interested diaspora professionals, she said: “I hope you take this opportunity and give back. And I believe that while you are here you will not only be giving, but you will also learn a thing or two.”
The Rwandan Private Sector Development and Youth Employment Strategy sets out to support start-ups with technical and financial support. Skills development and employment promotion are central to Rwanda´s transformative vision, aiming to become an upper-middle income country by 2035, and ultimately a high-income country by 2050.

The project is funded by the Belgian Government and is implemented by IOM Rwanda, in close collaboration with the IOM Country Offices in Belgium and Germany and with the Rwandan Ministry of Foreign Affairs and International Cooperation (MINAFFET) and the Ministry of Education (MINEDUC) through the Rwanda Polytechnic (RP) and its Integrated Polytechnic Regional Colleges (IPRCs).

This initiative builds on the Sustainable Development Goals (SDGs), mainly goal 4.4 on increasing the number of youth and adults who have relevant skills, goal 10.7 on facilitating orderly, safe and responsible migration and goal 17.16 on enhancing the global partnership for sustainable development, complemented by multi-stakeholder partnerships that mobilize and share knowledge, expertise, technology and financial resources, to support the achievement of the sustainable development goals in all countries, in particular developing countries.

For more information on the project, please contact Mr. Alexander Twahirwa, IOM Project Officer for Labour Mobility and Human Development (LMHD), at atwahirwa@iom.int.