The Embassy of Japan will be aiding the construction of a vocational training centre in Hatfield for Oasis Zimbabwe.
The $81,627 grant will assist the organisation in facilitating the training of girls’ and young women in IT skills, clothing technology, jewellery making and entrepreneurial skills. The project grant will help the construction of double storey building for girls living in Epworth and Hatfield.
At the signing of the agreement at the Japanese Embassy yesterday, the Ambassador of Japan, Mr Yonezo Fukuda said Japan places emphasis on human security, including social protection, which is critical for equity and national development.
“The assistance is in recognition of the importance of social protection and human resource development of orphans, especially girls and young women,” said Fukuda.
Acknowledging the financial constraints of families, as well as the current economic situation of the country, the Japanese Embassy saw the need to support Oasis as it provides youth opportunities to learn and acquire social and vocational skills.
“We will continue partnering with local and international NGOs in promoting social protection and livelihoods,” Fukuda added.
Oasis interim chief executive officer, Kevin Brits said the training is targeted at vulnerable girls aged between 16 and 23 so they are able to seek employment or start their own businesses.
Skills trainer Memory Siyapiya said upon the girls’ graduation, after a year of training in the clothing technology, Oasis also offers fortnightly mentoring for the girls.
“With help from the grant and with the building, we aim at recruiting more girls as a lot of them need this,” she said.
Oasis Zimbabwe, established in 2002, is a private voluntary organisation. It currently has five community-based projects including work with former street children, pre-school children, vulnerable youths, women and local churches.
The Japan Grant Assistance for Grassroots Human Projects, under which Oasis has received this grant, has supported a variety of self-help development throughout the country.