TRM penetrates Manicaland with youth empowerment initiatives

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Writes Marlvin Ngiza
Chitungwiza-based youth-led movement, Teen Rescue Mission (TRM), has stretched its wings to cover young people who live in Mutare, Manicaland Province with economic empowerment programmes which include carpentry, poultry production and dressmaking among others.
The extension of the organisation’s operations has been said to be prompted by worrisome statistics of young people who have been reported to be engaged in drug abuse and some falling victims of teen pregnancy and early marriages.
Speaking about the gesture, TRM Director, Abraham Matuka, said their visit to Manicaland province was successful and has been a stepping stone for them. It is going to assist them with coming up with a roadmap that would fish out young people from those future-eroding ills.
“After we have realised that many young people in Manicaland have been falling victim to drug abuse and early marriages, a situation which we thought has been perpetrated by lack of knowledge, education and unemployment, we decided to launch our anti-drugs campaign and empowerment projects in the province. We believe that once our plans are successful in terms of implementation, we will see a decline in the number of those ills.
“We first conducted an anti-drugs campaign and we have been assessing how we can smoothly introduce life skills such as welding, dressmaking, catering, hairdressing, poultry and gardening for self-reliance. As we were briefing them about these skills, many young people showed interest in some of our programmes and we are also going to open some arts clubs since some displayed talents in music, dance and creatives,” he said
Some of the youths who shared their sentiments applauded TRM for bringing educational campaigns and empowerment programmes into their community saying the development was timely and will go a mile in assisting them realising their potentials.
Sheilla Chakonza said “TRM has done a good job today to come up with a campaign against child marriages. In our region, some parents are contributing to these early marriages because of poverty and poor backgrounds. They are marrying off young girls to get food and money. This intervention will enlighten us as young girls on our rights,” said Chakonza.
“I want to thank TRM for such a noble thing. Here we get a few of these campaigns so I want to say our future will manifest positive fruits. From what the director has been teaching us, I realised that once the programmes get into full swing, surely we will be somewhere,” he said.
“Some of our peers ended up in drugs because of idleness and lack of guidance but I believe that with such a teaching we got through TRM we will have a sharp decline of statistics of those who will be engaged in these ills. We wish to have more of such sessions,” said Takura.
Meanwhile, one of the parents said “When I heard about this event I said I want to hear what is the significance of that. I am happy as a parent because I realised that the teachings were life-changing and even the future plans were bright and promising. We thank and continue to encourage youth organisations to organise and conduct more similar gatherings,” he said.
TRM has so far, as part of eradicating drug and substance abuse in communities, successfully equipped 300 young people with technical skills in Chitungwiza and recently signed a Memorandum Of Understanding (MOU) with the Chitungwiza Junior Council in a quest to expedite youth-tailored economic empowerment programmes without leaving no-one behind.
The trust has also managed to take the initiative to neighbouring countries such as Mozambique as a way to touch some of the Zimbabwean citizens who live there.