In 2020, following the onset of COVID-19, My World of Bags (MWOB) partnered with Mastercard Foundation on their COVID Resilience and Recovery Project. Thus, MWOB launched Project SafeUp – to provide 2.5 million items of PPE to the general public across Nigeria, and create employment opportunities in the process.

The employment aspect of Project SafeUp was implemented with one sub-objective tailored at skill-building on an informal level.

Following the implementation of Project SafeUp, the project’s placement program (designed to connect youth rolling off the project with available prospects) found that many of the youth who worked on the project were still unemployable – due to low hard and industrial skill levels and a general unfamiliarity with the industry.

Kafawa, which loosely translates to ‘establishment’ in Hausa, provides a means through which My World of Bags can establish skilled artisans across the manufacturing space.

It is an initiative that aims to address this challenge and improve youth employability by training them in basic machine skills and manufacturing using a variety of materials and industrial machines; as well as soft skills training, including entrepreneurship and business development, and self-development. The program is designed to build a generation of youth with a changed mindset towards the industry, where they begin to see tailoring, production and manufacturing as dignified and fulfilling.

The project will be implemented in two phases:

  • a full-scale hard- and soft-skill training programme for the youth; and
  • a placement program that provides trained youth with access to employment opportunities

The pilot edition of the program will be based in Oyo State and will focus on engaging youth within the state and training 250 – 300 candidates.