Refugee Workforce Development 

The Refugee Workforce Development Program (RWDP) provides refugees with access to high quality online training that fosters personal and professional advancement. Courses establish the skills they need to develop their readiness for employment and thrive in the workplace.

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Online Learning for Job Readiness and Community Development

In partnership with DisasterReady, Humentum, and local partners, our goal with the RWDP is to develop learners who can lead positive change within their community and gain employment, especially within NGOs and the humanitarian sector.

The RWDP facilitates access to employment. Course content improves job readiness and the specific skills local NGOs are searching for. We work with local partners who serve as potential employers to better understand their program goals and desired qualifications of their staff. The RWDP will eventually include an online job board on which NGO employers can post new position openings and streamline the contact between refugees and humanitarian organizations.

The RWDP Team believes in developing participants’ capacity to innovate and succeed. These strengths already exist within individuals and their communities—the RWDP simply aims to further cultivate and hone these skills.

RWDP Pilot

Our pilot program took place in Nakivale, one of the oldest refugee settlements in Uganda. The main purpose of the pilot was to assess the feasibility and need for workforce development education via online learning portals within a refugee community. We found there is interest from both refugees and NGOs, as well as an unmet need for reliable, accessible training.

Hear From Pilot Participants

I felt zealously opened to the outside world and I felt privileged [to be learning online].

Isaac Barikudembe

[I tried the RWDP] because I would like to get more knowledge and experiences and ideas.

Lucky Buhendwa

I decided to attend [the RWDP] because studying computers [and IT] was my hope and I'm here to use this golden chance.

Haji Beraka

Why Uganda?

According to Social Innovation Academy, a local NGO who has been working with refugees in Uganda since 2006, “Uganda has one of the highest youth unemployment rates in the world. In combination with one of the fastest growing populations, the country has a massive need for the creation of new employment opportunities. An estimated 700,000 new entrants join the Ugandan labor market each year and compete for the only 12,000 available formal jobs.”

Nakivale settlement has been a long-standing host to more than 100,000 refugees from Burundi, the Democratic Republic of Congo, Eritrea, Ethiopia, Rwanda, Somalia, Sudan, and South Sudan. Although some amenities are available, many refugees struggle to afford basic items and have serious issues integrating fully into the host community. The intention of the RWDP is to provide learners the knowledge, confidence, and resources they need to take a step forward.

Building Partnerships through Technology

We are happy to provide additional support to our NGO partners. Our friends at Roke Telkom are offering free or heavily discounted internet to NGOs working in and near refugee settlements in Uganda. Contact us to get connected.

Refugee Workforce Development Program

We want to hear from you. Whether you know of a refugee settlement where we can work, have equipment to donate, or want to become an NGO employer, we value your feedback and partnership.