Increasing employment opportunities for young people in the Tourism and Hospitality industry through TVET and upskilling activities

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Photo: © GIZ / Armand Kajangwe

The Tourism and Hospitality sector has a significant part to play in uplifting Rwanda’s economy and creating employment opportunities for the youth. Therefore, growth in this sector is a key national priority.

There are numerous opportunities in the Tourism and Hospitality sector. Yet, several challenges hinder young people from accessing these opportunities, for instance, limitation in the quality of TVET curricula to respond to the needs of the private sector, inadequate placements, internships, and upskilling opportunities. Hence, to address these challenges, in collaboration with Rwanda Polytechnic, RDB, Workforce Development Authority and the Chamber of Tourism, GIZ/Hanga Ahazaza initiative aims to improve skills and employability for youth in Rwanda’s Tourism and Hospitality sector.

Since 2018, the Deutsche Gesellschaft für Internationale Zusammenarbeit (GIZ) GmbH has been partnering with the Mastercard Foundation Hanga Ahazaza initiative to implement the TVET and training component of the initiative. This partnership brings dynamic approaches in enhancing the capacity of TVET schools, private sector, companies and associations to achieve sustainable, inclusive, and competitive growth.

GIZ/Hanga Ahazaza builds on its international experience, expertise, and lessons learnt, to close the service quality gap that exists in the sector through its different interventions. For instance, in order to ensure that at least 5,000 TVET students benefit through TVET education, GIZ/Hanga Ahazaza supports in the development of 9 new and the revision of 12 existing demand-led and competency-based TVET Tourism and Hospitality curricula as per regional and international standards. Thus, ensuring that there is long term sustainability in the quality and standards of education that students receive, thereby making them competitive. Likewise, 206 Tourism and Hospitality TVET trainers have received training of trainers training to improve their pedagogical methods. This ensures that students benefit in receiving up-to-date industry-based theoretical and practical knowledge, thereby increasing their competitiveness as per the needs of the labour market.

Also, to improve workplace learning in the industry, 239 in-company trainers have received training. Here, the benefits are two-fold. It ensures that interns or trainees receive better guidance and enhance their skills to be job-ready, and companies understand their relevance while cost-effectively benefitting through their services. Meanwhile, more than 2,400 young professionals have received short courses training developed in Culinary Arts, Food and Beverage services, Front Office Operation, and Housekeeping Operations in seven districts of Rwanda. Likewise, Tourism short courses for Tourism Product Development, Digital Marketing and Avi-Tourism are being developed that will benefit more than 1,000 young professionals. Furthermore, GIZ/Hanga Ahazaza also supports the development of Recognition of Prior Learning framework and quality assurance measures for the Tourism and Hospitality TVET, while also offering career guidance in IPRCs.

Rwanda, through various initiatives, is placing the human capital at a pivotal aspect in tourism planning and development at the heart of its 2050 vision. Rwanda’s education system is being geared to be market-driven and competence-based. Tourism and hospitality will be leading creators of net employment with an estimation of 10,000 net jobs (average) in this sector per year between now and 2050 (NSDEPS, 2019). Therefore, building the capacities of and ensuring employment opportunities to students, young professionals and trainers in the Rwandan Tourism and Hospitality industry is the impetus driving the work of GIZ/Hanga Ahazaza in Rwanda.

This Article was originally published in the December Issue of the VoyagesAfriq Travel Magazine

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