Unemployed persons from slum areas around Nairobi now have a reason to smile.
The Rockefeller Foundation and SAMSource wants to hire literate youth from these areas to work for giant companies such as LinkedIn, Intuit, the US State Department, and local hospitals, among others.
SAMSource – a non-profit organisation based in the US is working with Techno Brain – a local business processing and outsourcing company – to create jobs in data entry, content moderation and other outsourcing jobs to hundreds of Kenyans from poor families.
“The project we are in with SAMSource is about creating jobs to the youth from slum around Nairobi. We target those with IT skills that can help us do certain tasks for American companies,” says Lakshman Manickam, Director Operations and Human Resource at Techno Brain.
“SAMSource will bid for the contracts in the US and we will execute the tasks remotely from our offices here in Kenya. The work mostly involves ordinary outsourcing duties such as data entry, verification of contents on client’s websites, and high quality content moderation, over 100 people has been employed to carry out the tasks,” he says.
In an interview during her visit to Kenya, SAMSource Chief Operating Officer, Chelsea Cooper, said the youth initiative was prompted by the increasing rate of unemployment among educated youth in the country.
“These groups are able to perform tasks like web verification, data entry to companies like Google and e-bay, we are here to help link the two,” she said.
She said about 90 individuals in rural areas in Ugenya and Karachuonyo constituencies will also get computer training.
“There are a lot of opportunities in the developed world. Many companies now want to digitise most of their operations and are looking for affordable labour,” she said.
Meanwhile, Rockefeller Foundation unveiled a Sh35 million project targeting youth in informal settlements in Kenya, South Africa, and Ghana.
The Foundation recently funded digitisation of four million records in the Ear, Nose and Throat clinics at Kenyatta National Hospital at Sh34 million.
The contract was awarded to Technobrain, which recruited 35 youths from Kibera and Mathare to help speed up the process that will make records retrieval at the hospital easier.
“Digitisation of records at Kenyatta Hospital will make work easier for doctors in the hospital. It will save time and create efficiency at the institution,” noted James Nyoro, Rockefeller Managing Director.
“This is one of our flagship projects in the country to display that poverty can be fought using ICT. The project hires those from a disadvantaged background and helps impact on their everyday lives.”
In another project with Digital Divide Data (a local Business Processing Outsourcing), Rockefeller Foundation has also created 150 jobs to youth from Mathare Slums.
“The youths are doing satellite jobs such as data entry, among other outsourcing jobs to American Companies,” he said.
By FREDRICK OBURA, The Standard