YeewU Initiative Launch – DCM Martina T. Boustani’s Remarks – June 20, 2018

Remarks for
DCM Martina T. Boustani
YeewU Initiative Launch
Dakar, June 20, 2018

(As prepared)

 

Members of Social Change Factory

YeewU (yay-woo) participants

Dear guests

 

It is a pleasure to be here with you this evening to officially launch the YeewU (yay-woo) initiative.  I would like to congratulate the entire team at Social Change Factory for their commitment to empowering young people across Senegal through this initiative and their many other projects.

Social Change Factory is led by Sobel Ngom, an alumnus of the U.S. government- sponsored Young African Leaders Initiative–or YALI–Mandela Washington Fellowship Program.

We support the alumni of our exchange programs and organizations like Social Change Factory that are working on creative ways to tackle social challenges.

Some components of this initiative are already underway.  The U.S. Embassy is proud to help support two of these components, U-Clubs and U-Xchanges.

Through U-Clubs, 250 high school and university students will receive training from a specially designed curriculum on business skills and civic leadership.  These U-Clubs will encourage young people to be active in finding solutions to social challenges in their communities.

  • To help improve the academic performance of high school students, the U-Xchanges component will offer academic training and mentorship to high school students.
  • The team at Social Change Factory understands that students can succeed when they are given the tools they need, whether it is academic or skills-based training.

Of course, education is a much-discussed topic these days.  The government, academic institutions, students, and civil society are committed to finding solutions.  The U.S. government is engaged to help strengthen the education system by partnering with the Ministry of National Education and Higher Education on several programs.

We share your concerns about how to ensure the next generations is prepared to productively engage in their communities and in the economy of the future.  The potential, the drive, and the ambition of Senegal’s young people are there; we must ask ourselves how we can help them realize their goals.

Initiatives like YeewU (yay-woo) are helping to address these questions and are helping to provide students with skills that will help them succeed.

I am inspired by Social Change Factory’s moto, “Soyons Solutions.”  This is an important message for all of us to remember and to instill in young people; that they have a positive role to play in their communities.   Don’t ask others for solutions, be the solution!

To the trainers and facilitators of YeewU (yay-woo), I wish you success with this initiative.

To the students, I thank you for your commitment and participation.

Thank you.