Khat Awareness and youth empowerment (2012-2014)
The aim of Khat awareness and youth empowerment project is to facilitate the advancement of sustainable human, social, education and economic development through awareness, training, empowerment and recreation. It runs awareness and education for life programs whilst at the same time involves the youth in sport activities. The Khat awareness program will be a community-driven program that aims to nurture the youth into responsible citizens. Citizens who will ward off temptations to lead wayward live especially in the long existing civil war, poverty, the use of Khat and the wake of HIV/AIDS and other pandemics. The project is aimed to bring youth together through awareness and sport to address education, empowerment, life skills, peace, Drugs related elements, Malaria and HIV/AIDS issues. With civil war and poverty and the use of Khat rampant in Somalia youth are at significant risk, therefore, efforts to curb its devastating effects are important at this level. And furthermore:
1. To enable every individual to participate in Khat awareness workshops.
2. To make available number of Khat awareness information sites in Puntland areas.
3. To provide Advance Training on Quality for youth workers, teachers and coaches who are directly working with young people
4. To empower youth and women to become productive part of the society by providing them professional skills
5. To protect and develop the moral and ethical bases of human dignity and safety of those involved in the development of the society, by safeguarding access of education and information from exploitation of political, commercial and financial gain, and from practices that are partial or debasing, including gender inequality
6. Creation of website of the project to share information and learning from the project for wider dissemination
7. To break barriers for Somali girls and women to access of information, education, fitness exercise
The program is intended to operate in all major provinces and will be run by volunteers. The program is believed will roll out regionally with more than 1500 male (59%) and female 1040 (41%) youth actively, involved. Responsibilities will then gradually be handed over to local people. The project time scale will be a 9 years programme in a total of three main cities, implemented in three phases of 3 years each and it’s long term goal would be to show to the local communities and the policy and decision makers, a replicable model.
Activities implemented between 01.01-31.12.2010
The Finnish Foreign Ministry has supported and funded the Khad awareness and youth empowerment project in the year 2010 as pilot project and the result and impacts achieved are:
• Increased the strength and capacity of the project team and professionals involved in the project,
• Provided training and resources as response to identify needs,
• Empowered the youth, with specially eye given on girls and women,
• Capacity and resources of the local administration in identifying and elaborating social policies for youth were facilitated,
• Successful Data collection and assessment were carried out: The study noted that 69% of the interviewees are khat consumers of which 23% are female. The rest interviewees involve khat in selling while some other groups such as children of both genders involve in other benefits. The assessment further showed that khat trading is of the major contributing factor to HIV/AIDS spread and ignorance among the community. 12% of the khat sellers consuming khat are youth (boys) of age between 14 to 18 years,
• Took excessive awareness campaigns to increased knowledge and awareness of the effects of Khat in different parts of Bosaso and the surrounding villages reaching population of 2540 persons of all genders and types . Three mobilization campaigns have been conducted all together and reached 2540 persons of all ages and genders that are suited to receive the hidden information of Khat risk in a time that social awareness status is very low and the negative impact of khat is at its peak.