James Wakahiu @PeopleDailyKe
Garden City has started its second training phase that will see 150 young trainees equipped with vital technical skills for the local construction industry.
The Garden City Corporate Social Responsibility (CSR) Programme is a partnership between Garden City developer, Actis, one of the largest real estate private equity investor in sub-Saharan Africa, and Arc Skills, an international skills development company with operations in Kenya.
Launched in 2016, the programme is designed to equip young trainees aged 18 to 35 in and around the Garden City area with quality, practical training that meets global standards, to help bridge the local construction market’s current skills gap. Garden City is one of the country’s biggest shopping malls and is located along Thika Superhighway.
More than 280 young men and women were trained in a range of building and construction trades during the first phase of the programme and were involved in the construction of Garden City residences (215 apartments, duplexes and town houses built in two phases, now completed and occupied by tenants and homeowners). “Trainees in this latest building phase will be part of the construction team for Garden City Business Park where they will have the opportunity to get the practical, hands-on experience they need to get their qualifications. The first two commercial office blocks are currently under construction and East African Breweries Limited (EABL) has already taken up 60 per cent of the premium office space after signing a long-term lease with Garden City earlier this year,’’ commented Chris Coulson, Managing Director, Garden City.
The first batch of 22 trainees from the new construction phase graduated last week and received certification in plastering after receiving six weeks of competency-based technical training, assessment and certification from Arc Skills.
‘‘The focus of training is on developing construction industry skills to align with the expected jobs generation profile of the Garden City developments. With this training, we want to empower youth with skills to enhance their chances of securing income-generating opportunities,’’ said Stephen Kimenye, Project Manager, Arc Skills.
The training is conducted in groups of 25 on a six-week basis and is aligned with the timeline of the on going construction of the Business Park and skilled labour needs of the development.
On completion, students receive an internationally accredited certification from the Australian Vocational Training and Employment Group. The vocational curriculum is based on Australian occupational standards and industry best practices and is tailored to meet both local standards and labour market needs.