This is JA Africa presented #GatherReporter Fungai
Africa is one of the most beautiful places in the world, from its nature to a wide variety of its wildlife. The second-largest continent in the world behind Asia, 54 countries call Africa home. The continent is incredibly diverse, with over 1,500 languages spoken across the continent. Nigeria alone is said to have more than 250 cultural clans. Africa is well known for its magnificent flora and fauna from the desert plants capable of withstanding dry and harsh weather conditions to the most feared animal on earth, the lion.
JA (Junior Achievement) Africa was first established in South Africa in 1979 with the vision to inspire and prepare young people in Africa to succeed in the global economy. JA Africa is currently headquartered in Accra, Ghana. The organization focuses on equipping youth through financial literacy, work readiness, and entrepreneurship skills training. As of December 2019, JA Africa has impacted 255,896 students through its various programs in 14 countries—Botswana, Cote D’Ivoire, Gabon, Ghana, Eswatini, Senegal, Zambia, Zimbabwe, South Africa, Tanzania, Uganda, Kenya, Mauritius, and Nigeria. Six of these countries (Gabon, Ghana, Zimbabwe, Uganda, Kenya, and Mauritius) have active alumni chapters.
JA is relevant now more than ever in Africa. A recent survey on youth employment in the African private sector conducted by Oliver Wyman and JA Africa, 83% of youth expect the private sector to grow in the next five years. However, 54% of students believe there is lack of desirable opportunities for graduates, and 66% of employed youth find lack of job security as a key deterrent to the private sector
Through programs like the JA Company Program, JA Africa can meet the need for entrepreneurial skills and financial literacy in the African youth population. According to the survey, 91% of youth in Africa aspire to start a business in their country and JA Africa can equip them with the necessary tools and the right mindset to achieve this goal. Through JA Africa’s programs, students also gain knowledge directly from those who have walked the path before through the availability of JA volunteers.
JA Africa’s Company Program was selected as a 2020 Wise Awards Finalist as one of 15 projects solving pressing education challenges in Africa. This is merely a glimpse of the good work JA Africa is doing for the region!
Fungai Tanya Chimbuya is an ACCA student from Zimbabwe. She also runs her own personal development blog because she strongly believes for anything around you to change you have to change (become better).