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UPSHIFT is a program promoting the emergence of young teenagers and community innovators in Burundi


Nov 26, 2021

BUJUMBURA November 25th (ABP) – The Libraries Without Borders (BSF), in collaboration with UNICEF, organized, on Tuesday November 23, 2021, the final of the national competition for innovative projects UPSHIFT, with the aim of promoting the emergence of adolescents, young community leaders and innovators from Burundi, a check on the site by ABP has revealed.

The coordinator of those innovative UPSHIFT projects, Mrs. Nicole Uwimana, clarified that UPSHIFT is a program that was initiated in Burundi in 2018 by UNICEF and executed by Libraries Without Borders in nine provinces of Burundi namely Makamba, Rumonge, Bujumbura, Mwaro, Kirundo, Cibitoke, Ruyigi, Rutana and Cankuzo.

During this project, Ms. Uwimana affirmed that more than 50,000 young members of solidarity groups supervised by UNICEF partners, have been trained in the UPSHIFT methodology. The latter has enabled them to acquire 21st century skills in order to identify challenges in their communities and to propose solutions through social innovation and entrepreneurship.

She pointed out that these young people have, for a period of three months, benefited from a mentorship to design, build and test their solutions in the community.

The projects that young people intend to initiate go in the direction of facing the challenges that they have identified in their respective provinces. These include unwanted pregnancies, malnutrition, lack of clean water, unemployment and social cohesion.

At the time of the competition, one of the youth groups, from Ruyigi province in Kinyinya commune, identified a problem of children with bloated bellies and this is linked to malnutrition or undernourishment. To overcome this problem, these young people say that they have seen fit to set up vegetable gardens.

In that competition, the group from Bujumbura province was ranked first for distributing clean water using bamboo in their communities.