Government has commended Development Aid from People to People, DAPP Zambia’s commitment to promoting livelihood skills, sports and bringing youths together to support each other in improving their living conditions.
Copperbelt Province Minister, Elisha Matambo, who was represented by Ndola District Commissioner, Joseph Phiri at the DAPP Youth in Action Project’s Annual Sports Gala in Ndola Friday afternoon, said the skills DAPP is sharing with the youths are important in responding to the challenge of youth unemployment in the country.
“…let me again commend DAPP for helping equip our youths with entrepreneurial and vocational skills, fighting global warming and engaging in sports activities. These invaluable skills are closing the knowledge gaps that has hindered many youths from excelling when they receive empowerment from government and partnering stakeholders like DAPP. Knowledge is power. The skills are important in addressing the concern of youth unemployment,” he stated.
Since DAPP Zambia started the Youth in Action in 2020, the project has brought together more than 2,200 young people in 85 Youth Clubs from Chipulukusu, Nkwazi and Kawama Townships of Ndola. Over 1,000 young people have been trained in vocational skills such as carpentry, catering, power electrical and entrepreneurship to promote job creation among youths.
The minister further stated that government recognizes DAPP Zambia's longstanding commitment to community development since 1986, focusing on improving health, education, household income, livelihoods, sustainable food production and combating global warming.
“…we face the daunting challenge of climate change, which affects various aspects of our development. It brings me immense joy to learn that the Youth in Action Project has been actively involved in efforts to combat global warming through planting 1,500 trees, reuse and recycling. We are proud of you our young people taking action to fight global warming with a vision to protect our environment for our future generation. This environmental stewardship is commendable, and I urge the project's funders to consider increased support to extend the reach of this crucial initiative to benefit more young people and the nation,” he added.
Earlier in his welcoming remarks, DAPP Zambia Programmes Director, Mwansa Katunga challenged youths to continue working together to address challenges of youth unemployment, poverty, food insecurity, reduce HIV infections and global warming.
He advised to only be beneficiaries of policies, but to take the lead starting initiatives and programmes to improve their living conditions and develop their communities.
“Dear youths, rise to the challenge and become agents of change in the community to reduce the effects of global warming and climate change. One nugget of wisdom teaches us that “if you want to go fast, go alone. If you want to go far, go as a group (together)”. You should never grow tired of coming together and uniting through youth clubs to channel your energy positively and identify opportunities from the challenges you face. Your community needs you. The future generation needs you to take action now to fight poverty, reduce food insecurity and secure a healthy nation,” Mwansa told the youths gathered at the ground.
This year’s theme "Building Resilience for the Youths through Sports; Strive for a Better Future" recognizes the role of sports in creating platforms for young people to earn a living, build networks, and develop critical leadership skills.
“Various sports disciplines have become a dependable source of wealth and livelihood in our country and all over the world. As you seek academic knowledge, embrace, practice and excel in at least one sport, which you like the most. It is good for your physical fitness, building networks and earning a living,” he added.
Others in attendance at the sports gala included Copperbelt Province Child Development Coordinator under the Ministry of Community Development and Social Services, Esther Chimimba, Forest Rangers Football Club Captain, Cedric Djeugoue and his Manager, International Scout of Minks GS Sports Agency, Gift Mendez Soko.