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Young people in Uganda are gaining skills, getting jobs and saving money thanks to a partnership between Plan International, the Swedish International Development Cooperation Agency and Accenture.

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The A Working Future programme in Uganda connects young people with access to financial services, teaches them work skills and links them to job opportunities. Over 12,000 youth have benefitted from the programme since 2012, increasing their income by an average of 621%.

The programme, run by Plan International in partnership with the Swedish International Development Cooperation Agency (Sida) and Accenture Development Partnerships, transforms the lives of young people by using savings groups to teach the skills required to get good jobs.

This innovative programme shows the power of partnerships between the corporate and development sectors to address social issues while also generating commercial value.

Resty from Uganda tending to her pigs
Resty is using the money gained from her piggery to send her children to school.

Resty, 23 – pig farmer 

Resty, 23, is a mother to 3 young children and was forced to marry before 18. "Before, I had to ask for my husband's support for everything," she says.

She joined A Working Future in 2014 and became the treasurer of her local savings group. After attending training sessions, she decided to start rearing pigs. Resty says: “We did a cost-benefit analysis where I learnt that running a piggery is a lucrative business."

She also runs a small shop in her home and is now able to pay her children's school fees using money she has earned herself. Resty is planning to expand her livestock business to include poultry and is currently constructing a chicken coop.

Nololo, 21 – chilli farmer

Nololo tending to his chilli farm
Thanks to his chilli farm, Nololo is no longer financially dependent on his parents.

Nololo, 21, is chairperson of his local savings group. Before joining A Working Future in 2013 he had no source of income and was dependent on his parents for financial support.

After receiving training, Nololo became a sales agent for a consumer goods company. By saving his earnings and taking out a loan, he was able to open a shop.

He took out another loan and used the profits from his shop to produce chillies and hot peppers for a food exporting company.

"I took a loan of 200,000 Ugandan Shillings (€56),” he says. “Now I make 600,000 Ugandan Shillings (€168) per month. It has changed my life. Before I was depending on my parents, now I want to pay them back.

"My future plans include expanding the chilli farm and opening a wholesale shop within 2 years, where I can employ many more young people."

Learn more about A Working Future