Originally published on www.omiusa.org
By Mike Viola
For more than 15 years, young people in Zambia have been building brighter futures thanks to the Lukulu Training Centre. The Missionary Oblates help run the centre, which provides job skills to young people who had dropped out of formal education.
“Currently we have about 75 students,” said Bro. Maximillian MWAKACHEYA, Director of the training centre. “Most of our students come from very poor families.”
The training centre offers students courses in five areas: Automotive Mechanics, Carpentry, Computer Studies, Construction and Tailoring. Most courses take two years to complete. Upon graduation, the students have a much greater chance of finding steady employment despite living in the poorest part of the country.
“The training centre has trained many young men and women who now run their own small businesses, especially in carpentry and tailoring,” said Bro. Maximillian.
The training centre is in the Diocese of Mongu. Oblate Bishop Evans Chinyama CHINYEMBA, has been a strong supporter of the centre and recently donated eight laptop computers to be used in the Computer Studies program. Most of the students who complete the Computer Studies program go on to advance studies at the college level.
Brother Maximillian says one of the main challenges of operating the training centre is to come up with the money to keep the school open. He is always looking for sponsors for students who are unable to pay the modest fees.
“I am happy with how things are going at the training centre because I feel like we are truly doing Oblate ministry,” said Bro. Maximillian. “We are reaching out to the youth and even more importantly to the poor.”