Automotive engineering trainings are conducted at various vocational training institutions with sponsorship from KCB Foundation.
The motor service industry is set for a major transformation following the signing of a partnership between the KCB Foundation, Toyota Kenya Foundation Registered Trustees (TKFRT) and Toyota Kenya Limited that will see automotive engineering graduates certified to own Toyota Service centres.
The partnership will enhance skills development and business start-ups for youth in automotive engineering, under the KCB Foundation’s 2Jiajiri programme.
Under the arrangement, young people will acquire automotive and business skills that will enable them to start their own businesses along the automotive engineering value chain.
Top students of the KCB Foundation’s 2jiajiri automotive class will attend automotive engineering classes for a further 12 months under the Toyota Service Technician of 21st Century” (TST21) programme.
The class was officially commissioned on Friday 1st December, 2017 at the Toyota Academy, Toyota Business Park, Nairobi.
Under the partnership, the KCB Foundation is pooling resources in provision of scholarships to youth in auto mechanics to skill and upskill them to appropriate levels that allows them to compete for the TST21 certificate. TKFRT is upskilling the trainees for one year, starting with 12 of them who were the crème de la crème of the inaugural class of 2016 and upon satisfactory completion, will certified as TST21 Graduates recognised by Toyota Kenya Limited.
Youth who benefit from the programme will be certified to set up garages as Toyota Kenya Limited Appointed Service Centre (TKASC), provided they meet the set criteria. They will then be legible for seed capital from KCB Foundation under the 2Jiajiri loan to set up a TKASC which will consist of a car wash, a maintenance bay and a spare part unit, thus creating several jobs for their peers.
Toyota Kenya Limited has a plan to expand service centres across Kenya in a bid to open up the automotive industry as well as provide employment to Kenyan youth.
In line with both parties’ shared commitment to the advancement and empowerment of youth, the partnership will see youth beneficiaries from KCB Foundation’s 2jiajiri programme benefitting from training and apprenticeship opportunities with the motor vehicle dealer. Eleven (11) youth from the 2Jiajiri programme will train at the Toyota Kenya Academy every year to enhance their automotive skills.
“We are determined to build the entrepreneurial skills of the youth and entrepreneurs in the automobile sector through innovative training and education initiatives. We are also committed to support and nurture start-ups and businesses, and foster access to markets for the young entrepreneurs” said KCB Group CEO and MD Joshua Oigara during the graduation. “At the core of our corporate citizenry efforts is our support for youth enterprise development. Nurturing social enterprises – self-sustaining businesses that creatively and effectively address social needs, is our way of addressing the challenge of youth unemployment.”
He urged vocational learning institutions to amplify their efforts in offering competitive courses and aim to produce higher numbers of qualified and market-ready graduates.
The recent commitment by several global automotive manufacturers is set to increase production in Kenya, presenting the informal automotive engineering sector with the motivation and potential to formalise and organise its operations, and subsequently reaping from the flourishing industry.
“This means the need for more manpower to address current and expected rising motor vehicle repair needs. There is therefore need for heightened efforts to address the professional needs for the small-scale automotive industry,” said KCB Foundation Executive Director Jane Mwangi.”
On his part, Toyota Kenya Foundation Chairman, Amb. Dennis Awori noted: “We seek to play our role as a multinational in creating opportunities for the youth who will eventually support the industry we do business in. Youth entrepreneurship could be the long-term solution to youth unemployment not just locally but globally as well.” He said adding that the TST21 will enable the beneficiaries to develop skills in the latest automobile technology.
The small-scale automotive repair sub-sector in Kenya has recorded tremendous growth, with between 3,000 – 9,000 motor vehicles being imported monthly into Kenya. The Kenya Revenue authority predicts that there will be over 5 million motor vehicles on Kenyan roads by 2030. This means more manpower to address current and expected rising motor vehicle repair needs.
Out of the over 12,500 beneficiaries of KCB Foundation’s 2jiajiri programme in various sectors, more than 500 youth have so far benefitted from the 2jiajiri automotive training, with 11 who excelled in the first cohort gaining admission to the prestigious Toyota Kenya Academy. The graduates will receive funding from KCB Foundation to set up their businesses, with each receiving Ksh 20 million to set up a service centre.
The partnership agreement with Toyota is part of the KCB Foundation’s initiatives to secure internship and employment opportunities for its beneficiaries in the informal sector in the last one year.