Adult/Youth Nonformal Vocational and Technical Education
In 1974 the Ministry of Education developed nonformal vocational programs to serve out-of-school youths and adults. In respect of policy measures and institutional reforms, the purpose of adult/youth and nonformal education is to provide an opportunity to those who were unable to avail themselves of formal educational opportunities. The objective is to provide vocational training, along with basic literacy and numeracy skills, so that each individual can participate and contribute more effectively to his/her well-being, and to society. Such adult/youth and nonformal vocational technical education is conducted on a nonformal basis through programs offered by Rural Education Centers, School of Appropriate Farm Technology, Manzini Industrial Training Center, to name a few. The following comprise some of the major adult/youth nonformal vocational and technical education training centers. Manzini Industrial Training Center-Emakhonweni
As a result of the pressing need for vocational and technical skills training as an alternative form of education, Manzini Industrial Training Center (MITC) was established with the aim of giving its trainees useful and practical skills in a trade or craft which may help them find a job upon completion. The MITC provides skills training for unemployed youth between the ages of 18 and 25 years. These are out-of-school youth who are at risk. Fundamental to the program is the acquisition of basic vocational skills which will enable a young person to earn his/her own living whether by self- or waged employment. In most of the courses offered at the Center, upon completion of the two year course in basic skills, the trainees take the relevant Swaziland Government Trade Test-Grade III with the intention of going on to Government Trade Test level-Grade II. This enables those who have not had the opportunity to complete high school (grade 12) to obtain a qualification which is recognized for pay purposes, in the wage employment sector. However, for those trainees whose desire is to become self-employed, they can apply for placement in the Business Management Extension Program (BMEP), a one year course which offers facilities and training, under the "sheltered workshop concept," to prospective entrepreneurs. The MITC has an enrollment of over 200 trainees receiving skills training in 13 areas. Agriculture, Sewing, and Upholstery are one year courses in duration whereas Building, Carpentry, Electrical, Metal Work, Motor Mechanics, Plumbing, Printing, Panel Beating, Small Engine Repair, and Spray Painting are two years in duration. The approach employed in the training utilizes a combination of on the job training and theory lectures. Remaining as the principal training approach is "Training through production" (Manzini Industrial Training Center, Annual Report 1990/91). Business Management Extension Program
In 1986 the management of Manzini Industrial Training Center (MITC) established the Business Management Extension Program (BMEP). BMEP is an indigenous small enterprise development project set up to combat the problem of unemployed youth who have already acquired vocational technical skills. With a grant from United States Agency for International Development (USAID), an administration building, warehouse, and eight workshops were built. BMEP is a unique institution in Swaziland that fills a specific niche: training and technical assistance for small and microbusinesses and the development of new enterprises (Gamedze, 1993, Personal interview). BMEP's mission is to promote small enterprise development by providing trade and business skills training, individual business consultancy, and financial assistance to persons who are matured, have job experience and vocational skills, work for themselves full-time, and exhibit entrepreneurial traits. The mission statement contributes to the goal of increasing employment generated by...
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