New Normal: Post COVID-19 Interventions
At TYTF, we began with what was a ‘’wellbeing response plan’’ that was set up to meet the immediate needs of young people by leveraging our communication channels. Internally, the team continues to work remotely, sometimes even working through long hours having phone and virtual meetings with the board, partners, and beneficiaries. Our project activities have been adapted and sometimes may be paused depending on the situation on the ground but are mostly continuing as normal with social distancing and covid-19 safety measures. An Important milestone was reached in the fight against the pandemic when the 1st batch of 1.02 million doses of Astra Zeneca oxford Covid-19 vaccine arrived in the country on March 3, 2021. Since then, more people have come out to receive the vaccine.
However, the situation is not changing and we needed to change strategy and adopt a post-Covid approach recognizing the need for more sustainable measures that support our young people’s livelihoods while learning to cope with the new normal.
TYTF post-COVID-19 interventions are focused on helping vulnerable young people to continue with their education, as well as integrating recommended health and hygiene protocols by the Ministry of Health, and the World Health Organization.
TYTF stood by students and alumni, checking on their ability to quickly adapt to technology and supporting them where necessary to ensure work continues, and mitigate against eroding the gains we have made in our programmatic work.
COVID -19 Pandemic and its Impact among the Students
He is the second born from a family of five children. He lives in Lungalunga in Mukuru slums. Kennedy is a humble and hardworking guy. He pursued a plumbing and masonry course courtesy of the TYTF scholarship program. He began the course in February 2019 later on in December 2019, he sat for his NITA (National Industrial Training Authority) plumbing test. He is now done with his plumbing course. Currently, he works with Globe Plumbing service. The company specializes in pipe fitting, material supply, sanitary installation, biogas technology, and maintenance.
Kennedy is married to a lovely wife and they have been blessed with three children. The impact of the COVID -19 pandemic on the economy has hit him even harder. The informal economy that his expertise depends on has been devasted after curfews and other containment measures were introduce by the Government of Kenya to curb the spread of the COVID-19 virus. From April 2020 until September 2020, he hadn’t reported working. He ended up exhausting his lifelong savings as a means of survival to buy food. It reached a time where he was unable to buy food and afford decent shelter for his family. The high cost of living has pushed him into bad debts that he won’t be able to pay for now. He hopes things will be better in the future.
She is a twenty-four-year-old young and humble lady residing In Mukuru’s Sinai slums. She studied a dressmaking course courtesy of the TYTF scholarship program. It is a six-month course which she completed in December 2019. While studying she did internal exams in July last year after that she proceeded for industrial attachment in a local business.
‘’I was raised in a family of five children. We were four girls and one boy. My father passed away while we were still young.’’ Her mother has been instrumental in bringing them up as a family. ‘’For now, I am married and live happily with my husband.’’
‘’The pandemic has negatively impacted my studies since I was supposed to graduate April 8th, 2020. As a result, the Mukuru Skills Training Centre postponed its annual graduation until further notice. During these unprecedented times, accessing food items has been difficult due to travel restrictions after the Government introduced cessation of movement to curb the spread of COVID-19. However, it becomes easier as some of these containment measures were lifted but the food continues to increase in price.’’ ‘’I was lucky to be awarded another scholarship by ”Dreamgirl organization’’ to further my studies and this enables me to enroll in a tailoring course.
Now I want to specialize in both male and female cloth design. I resumed my studies on November 1st after a long break caused by the closure of schools by the Government.’’
‘’I am grateful for TYTF support that has open up opportunities to further my career.’’
‘’My name is Faith. I was raised by my single mother in a family of five children. I am currently residing in Mukuru ‘s Kwa Reuben slum. Through the help of TYTF, I did a hairdressing and beauty course at Mukuru Skills Training Centre (MSTC). I finished my course and was due to graduate in March this year 2020.
However, this year unexpected happen after the first case of Coronavirus was announced in Kenya on 12th March 2020. Learning institutions were shut down for six months due to the COVID-19 pandemic. The disruptions affected my schooling as such I was not able to graduate and get my academic certificate. These academic papers are crucial for a job search in Kenya.
I was also laid off in my previous place of work in a saloon. The owner told me that she can’t manage to run the business due to low returns. The business was at its knees after customers feared contracting COVID-19. Life has been hard; I am struggling even to pay for our house rent which is KSH 2000 every month.
There was a breakthrough on October 12th, 2020 after Kenya partially reopen schools. I was lucky to get a job teaching in a local community-based primary school here in Kwa Reuben. Despite this, the school has its challenges parents cannot pay for their children school fees. Thus, I haven’t received my two-month salary.’’