Ethiopia: Jointly Coming Up With Able Tvet Trainers –

Ethiopia Leather Industry Development Institute Director Wendu Legesse and Addis Ababa TVET Agency deputy Head Teklu Shikur while visiting the leather pruducts

Qualified and motivated teachers and instructors are key for effective education. They are at the heart of a quality Technical Vocational Education Training( TVET). Effective policies and frameworks aimed at professionalizing TVET staff and improving their professional development, living and working conditions are considered essential measures. They as well constitute an important aspect of the discipline.

We all agree that education is an indispensable asset in confronting the many challenges of the future and in attaining the ideals of peace, freedom and social justice. The fundamental principle is that education must contribute to the over-all development of each individual, mind and body, intelligence, sensitivity, aesthetic sense, personal responsibility and spiritual values.

Ethiopia is a land inhabited by close to hundred million people most of which are youths. About 26 million of the youths are found in schools. This could be seen as a blessing to the development of the nation as a trained human power is one of the main catalysts of the development of any country.

Of late, this writer had attended the final day of a commendation event of trainers of TVETs drawn from various parts of Addis Ababa. The training was organized by Addis Ababa Technical & Vocational Agency and Ethiopia Leather Industry Development Institute.

Fifty TEVT Trainees had undergone a two-month training on how to produce quality leather goods, foot wares and leather garments. This writer had approached some of them to learn to what extent the training could assist them in bridging skill gaps and refining methodologies. Shewalem Daniel from Akaki TVET said the following ” I am a footwear trainer. Standing a chance to this kind of rare opportunity is so fascinating. Shoe patters and documentation comprise the extra skills I have to pick from the training.

I am now in a better position to train TVET students to produce quality shoes.”

Asked about the advantages of the event , Shewalem said the joint effort of Leather Institution experts and Addis Ababa TVET Agency to bridge skill gaps in technical and methodological approaches of trainers is commendable.

Birtukan Alemu is a leather garment trainee from Keftegna 12.She told this writer that the training has been helpful to brush up memory.” It as well has let us to learn more about designing pattern on paper and cutting it out on cartoon .”

“We had a taken leather jacket design courses as well. We just want to inject the new ones in our peculiar way of designing. That is we blend the two. Even if we face machine shortages to come up with our products at a given time,we could circumvent the challenge implementing new projects turn by turn.

Ethiopia Leather Industry Development Institute Director Wendu Legesse and Addis Ababa TVET Agency deputy Head Teklu Shikur while visiting the leather pruducts (Photo by Gebabo Gebrei)

Ethiopia Leather Industry Development Institute Director Wendu Legesse said that leather industry promises a huge market, running 100 billion USD world wide. To elbow aside into the global market quality is a decisive component producers need take in to consideration.

Ethiopia footwear industry and its leather sector in general enjoy significant international comparative advantages owing to the country’s abundant and available raw materials, highly disciplined workforce and relatively less expensive prices.

Ethiopia boasts of the largest livestock population in Africa, and the 10th largest in the world. Ethiopia annually produces 2.7 million hides, 8.1 million sheepskins and 7.5 million goatskins.

This comparative advantage is further underlined by the fact that the costs of raw hides and skins constitute on the average 55-6 per cent of the production of semi processed leather.

Ethiopia’s leather and leather product sector produces a range of products from semi-processed leather in various forms to processed leathers including shoe uppers, leather garments, stitched upholstery, backpacks, purses, industrial gloves and finished leather. Ethiopian leather products have been exported to markets in Europe (especially Italy and the UK), America, Canada, China, Japan and other Far Eastern countries and the Middle East. Leather is also exported to other African countries including Nigeria and Uganda.

Leather Industry Development Institute is committed to work with all States. But for the moment Amhara, South Nation and Nationalities Peoples as well Addis Ababa are selected for the first round move of the project, due to be implemented.

Agency Deputy Head Teklu Shikur said that from the very beginning the education policy aimed at providing diversified technical and vocational training thereby to satisfy the country’s need for skilled manpower. It intends to create competent, motivated, employable,adaptable and innovative workforce through which the country’s socioeconomic development shall be enhanced.

According to Teklu, a holistic and integrated human resource development program for TVET aims at arming individuals with the necessary knowledge to become a responsible, free and mature persons, equipped not only with the appropriate skills and know-how of the latest technologies, but also with deep human and spiritual values and attitudes, – a sense of self-worth, self-esteem and dignity; an ability to work by oneself and with others in teams, with integrity and honor, with honesty, punctuality and responsibility; to adapt to varying situations; to know and understand problems and issues; to work out solutions creatively; to resolve conflicts peacefully; to have a good grasp of the reality of the world, of oneself and of others; to possess some general knowledge with specialization in some field or area of work; and to acquire the ability to continue learning and pursue lifelong education in a learning society.

Ethiopia Leather Industry Development Institute instructor Rahel Tekeste noted that the three basic shoe ware styles and leather garment designs were the main focus areas of the training. “Most of the trainees were so active participants. They as well were cooperative.”

The leather industry is attracting a huge investment locally as well as internationally, so preparing skilled human power is a task the country should give focal attention too. Skill should be continually honed and bolstered by practice. In this regard the trainees were active participants.

They as well were cooperatives. “I think the nation is laying the foundation for the burgeoning of skilled leather human power. Presumably, the market is lucrative.”

The Agency has given due attention to supporting the Small Micro Enterprises (SMEs) and address the demand of development of skilled human power for the industrial sectors to flourish.

The newly constructed 11 workshops, equipped with machinery in Addis Ababa at a cost of more than 407 million Birr could be the showcase in this regard.

According to the Federal TVET, in the ensued academic year about 437,210 trainees will join the TVETs.

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