Youth in Narok County have been urged to take advantage of the Youth Empowerment Centres (YEC) built in all the six sub counties to build their talents and innovations.
The County Director of Youth Affairs Joash Ratemo said the centres are a one-stop hub where the youth benefit from Information Communication and Technology (ICT) services, guidance and counseling on drugs and substance abuse, HIV prevention messages among others.
“The centres will provide an opportunity where youth can exploit their talents and keep themselves busy to avoid being involved in criminal activities,” he said.
YEC, Ratemo said, are public spaces where youth from different backgrounds converge and exchange ideas to build their talents and creativity.
“They serve as a centre of cohesion and integration among youth from different education, social, religious and tribal backgrounds. The young people spend quality time together where they discuss positive ways of improving their livelihood,” he said.
The government embarked on building the YEC in the year 2008 and was now in the process of equipping them to directly benefit the young people, reiterated Ratemo.
“All the six sub county headquarters have a youth centre. The government is in the process of refurbishing and equipping them so as to address the challenges that the youth were facing,” he added.
A spot check at Narok North YEC shows a group of young people who come to the centre for guidance and counseling and to enjoy the free ICT services.
Collins Makongolo, a former Maasai Mara University student who graduated last year with a bachelor’s degree in commerce said he goes to the centre to meet with friends and enjoy the free internet connection.
Makongolo said he spends time checking the ongoing government projects and the available vacancies on the internet as well as doing online jobs.
“We appreciate the government for such a great initiative aimed at addressing the diverse socio-economic needs among the young in the country,” he said.
By Ann Salaton