The programme welcomes 100 university student volunteers from across five universities in Kenya – Strathmore University, University of Nairobi (Main and Lower Kabete campus), Jomo Kenyatta University of Agriculture and Technology, and Kenyatta University.
Volunteers will work towards improving health and well-being in their community, with the ultimate goal of reaching about 10 million Kenyans by 2020. The programme focuses on youth as an untapped force for good, empowering them to step up and make a change in their society.
“Through our Heroes for Change programme, we aim to tackle the multiple health and well-being issues in Africa and create a socially conscious society by mobilising the Kenyan youth to play a significant role in making a difference to their society,” said Justin Apsey, CEO Unilever East Africa. “There is an increasing appetite and mindset for social impact among today’s youth. Youth in Kenya are no longer contented to live in the current society – they want to make a difference. This programme is a platform to make and change and we strongly believe that together with our partners, we can work together with the wider community to effect positive change in our community by 2020.”
In addition to creating an impact in society, Heroes for Change also aims to address issues such as skills training, employability and social challenges facing Kenyan youths today. According to data from the World Bank, youth unemployment in Kenya has averaged 20 per cent in the last 10 years, and almost 155,000 youth who join the labour market annually after completing training in universities and other training institutions often do not meet the expectations of employers.