SIFA funding

Africa is growing and to fuel this growth it needs skilled labour that caters to the needs of the growth sectors of the economy. The importance of employable skills development in a broader sense is increasingly understood by African  governments and significant efforts have been made. The Heads of State and Government of the African Union (AU) have laid down the vision and ideals for the continent’s accelerated development and technological progress to serve as pillars for the continent in the foreseeable future. The African Union’s Agenda 2063 calls for a paradigm shift towards transformative education and training systems to meet the knowledge, competencies, skills, research, innovation and creativity required to nurture the future. To unleash the potential of skills development and technical and vocational education and training (TVET), the African Union has developed a “Continental TVET Strategy” that provides a comprehensive framework for skills development and youth employment. Nonetheless, a shortage of qualified teachers, scholarships and inadequate infrastructure as well as an absence of practical vocational curricula and missing or inadequate technical and didactical equipment still pose significant challenges to the successful implementation of the Strategy.

Under the SIFA, a Financing Facility for Skills Development has been established. The Facility is implemented by the AU’s New Partnership for Africa’s Development (NEPAD Planning and Coordinating Agency - NPCA)), with financing from Germany through KfW. The Financing Facility for Skills Development is designed to coherently address the common challenges in skills development by upscaling and/or disseminating local best practices and supporting innovative and sustainable approaches and thereby foster the employment and entrepreneurship of youth, women, and vulnerable groups including refugees, migrants, and internally displaced persons, the disadvantaged and disabled.The Financing Facility for Skills Development provides funding on a competitive basis for the implementation of innovative and sustainable skills development initiatives. It is for initiatives, which directly engage the private sector, address market needs, and can have a regional impact. Initiatives must align with national strategies with the perspective of improving quality-based employment-oriented skills development.

SIFA is an initiative of the African Union Commission (AUC) supported by the German Government to strengthen occupational prospects of young people in Africa.

To begin with seven countries have been selected as pilot countries – Cameroon, Ethiopia, Kenya, Nigeria, South Africa, Togo and Tunisia.

SIFA finances skills development projects in several African countries. Projects should contribute to employment-oriented skills development for young people

Selected projects can receive a grant between EUR 0.2 to 3 million for sustainable and innovative initiatives.

  • Result I: Selected institutions have been capacitated to provide employment-oriented skills development.
  • Result II: Access to employment-oriented skills development for young people is improved, in particular for women, students from low income groups, refugees and migrants.
  • Result III: Private sector contributes to improving skills development by participating in the design and the delivery of employment-oriented skills development programmes.
  • Result IV: Lessons learned and best practices are disseminated at national, regional and continental level.

Grant Amount per project :Up to EUR 3 million.

Project implementation duration: Up to 30 months

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