Government launches graduate volunteer scheme

By Edwin Muhumuza

The government of Uganda through the Ministry of Gender Labour and Social Development (MGLSD)with support from the United Nations Development Program have launched the Graduate Volunteer Scheme (GVS).

The project aims at contributing to efforts of addressing persistent employment challenges faced by Ugandan young graduates by leveraging volunteerism as an essential mechanism for skills development.
It aims to create employment avenues for young graduates while building capacity of national institutions, private sector and other partners to mainstream youth employment into their work places. This while ensuring young graduates have a full-on job package that includes coaching, mentor ship, linkages to role models to guide them along their career path.
‘This is our contribution to the national strategy to increase availability and quality of employment and enhance human capital in this country. Said Rosa Malango ,the UN Resident Representative.

Volunteers are matched depending on the available placement opportunities. The process of matching and placing volunteers is led by the selection committee and both volunteers and host institutions have opportunity to participate in the recruitment process. Volunteers also go through a 3 days residential orientation training to induct them on their volunteer placements.

‘Through this scheme our aspirations is that total of 500 young graduates will be placed in various institutions for 12 months period at a time. During that time they will acquire skills related to their area of study.’ Malango added.
So far 100 graduates have been recruited, trained and placed,50% male and female,18% masters ,78% bachelors and 4% diploma/advanced certificate; and 5 graduates with disabilities.
On his part Permanent secretary Ministry of Gender Pius Birimana noted that ‘’This scheme is going to impart hands-on skill to graduates and should be noted that the future prosperity of this country depends ultimately on the number of persons in employment and also how productive they are at work’

According to the 2017 Uganda National Household Survey,78% of the population is below 30 years. Related to that every year about 600,000- 700,000 Ugandans enter the labor market,95% of whom are youth. Youth unemployment persists since many of them lack work experience, skills needed by the labor market plus limited connection to enterprise role models and innovative solutions.

Labor and Gender ministry urges women to participate massively in elections

By Daudi Zirimala

The ministry of Gender Labour and Social Development has called upon village women councils to participate fully in the coming Women parish council elections due to take place on Monday 23rd July 2018.

Speaking to the media, the state for Gender and Cultural Affairs Peace Mutuzo Regis said that women councils are machinery for advocating for well being of women in Uganda by providing a platform for airing out views of the people at the grass root.

She said that the ministry of gender is rallying all women to participate in these elections, because they form part of the election committee which scrutinizes women groups to access funding under the Uganda Women Entrepreneurship programme UWEP and effective implementation of Operation Wealth Creation especially among women.

The Parish women’s council is composed of the entire elected village women’s council leaders from all villages in a parish and these will converge to elect from among themselves a five member parish women council executive.

AMREF boss calls for salary increase for health workers

By Waswa Deo

East and Central Africa countries have been major victims of the on going medical labor migration. The observation made indicates that majority of  these labor movements are due to low salaries paid to health workers, unfavorable working environments, lack of equipment and recommended drugs to provide treatment to patients among others.

According  to Director, Regional Programs and Field Offices at ‎Amref Health Africa, Dr. Osur Joachim, ‎It is depressing  for  health workers to  see patients dying and are helpless because of lack equipment and drugs to provide treatment.

The available figure shows that in Uganda,  a health worker  is paid $700, in Kenya $1400, in Malawi paid $ 610, in Liberia is $ 1200, in Zimbabwe $ 400, which is much lower compared to south Africa which pays $7282, $12122 in UK, $ 12918 in Canada and  $15000 in USA.

Dr. Osur therefore encourages governments to invest more money in the health sectors so as to combat these movements. “If you are paying your health workers well, you are improving the conditions of work, and helping them to develop in their professional, they will have no reasons to move to other countries.’’says Dr. Osur.

According to him, there is need  for all health experts, health organizations, health workers themselves and other concerned stake holders in  health sector, to put government on spot to invest more in healthcare, pay health workers commensurately compared to other countries and make them stay.