The Vocational Training Center (VTC) – a showpiece in the region
The Tanzanian state is not in a position to provide sufficient apprenticeship places for primary and secondary school leavers. Unfortunately, there are only few vocational training centres in Tanzania. Although the existing apprenticeship workshops are well organised, the number of institutes is too small to meet the immense demand.
There is a lack of everything – school buildings, money for books and finances for teachers’ salaries. Even the families are not able to pay the costs of the school. Above all the girls remain without education.
With the dual vocational training, the Tuwapende Watoto Foundation wants to make an important contribution to the positive development of young adults in the field of vocational training. We want to help pupils who cannot attend an education for financial reasons. We want to promote their manual skills, train technical understanding and also teach general knowledge such as computer skills, accounting, English and marketing.
The professional know-how gained through the training and the extended general education will help the graduates to be more successful on the job market. Within our project we also want to support the graduates of the VTC by providing them with tools and/or micro credits. This would enable them to become independent and start their own business.
The Tuwapende Watoto Vocational School (Vocational Training Center VTC) is state-approved. Apprentices take a state-approved final examination and receive a corresponding certificate.
In 2016 we realized the first step of the vocational training center with the construction of the first two school buildings, the toilet facilities and the gatehouse. In the six classrooms we taught two vocational school classes in 2017 for tailors, one class for bakers and two classes for gardeners. In summer 2017 we built the third building with three classrooms and in January 2018 we were able to hand over three more classrooms to the company. As of January 2020, Tuwapende Watoto VTC offers two-year vocational training courses for tailors, horticulture, bakers/food production, electricians, electronic technicians, plumber, hairdressing/beauty, ICT. From 2021, we will offer training for the professions of industrial electrician, solar technician (renewable energy) and bicycle mechanic.
During their training, the apprentices will do the maintenance work for all our buildings, plant and harvest the vegetables and fruits necessary for the school and the orphanage, bake the bread for the school children and the children home, and sew clothes for the school uniform.
The proximity to our school has the advantage that we can use the existing facilities, such as the school kitchen and dining hall, also for the apprentices and the teachers of the vocational training centre.
In 2013, we bought the 44,000 m2 site and thus created the opportunity to actually implement this project. The proximity to the school campus has the advantage that we can also use existing facilities such as the buildings for the administration and the catering (kitchen and dining room) for future apprentices.
Vocational Training Center (VTC) / New constructions in 2016
At the beginning of January 2017, we were able to hand over the first two school buildings, each with three classrooms and four storage rooms to the vocational school. This was the first big step for the establishment of the new apprentice training center. At the same time, we were also able to put into operation the toilets / showers and the gatehouse with two storerooms.
Toilets / showers in Vocational training center (VTC)
Our apprentices all work with great dedication and commitment to their goal of completing a state-recognized professional apprenticeship. In addition to theoretical subjects, the apprentices are also trained in practice-oriented work, at the usual high temperatures. That is why we enable the apprentices to freshen up before they go home after having done their work.
In Tanzania it is common for a gatekeeper to regulate and monitor the entrance to the campus. In addition to the room for the doorman, we have created two storage rooms for the equipment of the gardeners. With the water tank next to the building, we can supply all the buildings with water. The water is pumped from our own waterhole into this tank.From there, the water flows both to the school system and toilet and showers.