With a strong focus and commitment to skills development in Africa, a key WorldSkills goal is to empower and inspire African youth to pursue personal and economic fulfilment through the power of skills. A key vehicle in this regard is the staging of the continental WorldSkills Africa Competition, as the precursor for the international biennial WorldSkills Competition (WSC).

Namibia was awarded the rights to host WorldSkills Africa Swakopmund 2022 (WSAS2022) at the 45th WSC in Kazan, Russia. WSAS2022 took place from 28 March to 2 April 2022 at the MTC Dome, in Swakopmund, Erongo Region, Republic of Namibia.

For Namibia, hosting this event was in line with national long-term strategic objectives to leverage the TVET sector; and by extension, support economic prosperity for future generations.

WSAS2022 was a three-tier event, designed to leverage sustainable skills development for youth in Africa, the event consisted of a Skills Competition, a Skills Conference and a Skills Exhibition and targeted youth-in-school; young adults; parents and guardians; youth organizations; academia; leaders and influencers; educators; and training institutions.

From a continental perspective, WSAS2022 brought together Africa’s best young skills talent and key regional and global TVET stakeholders, generating significant value for all participants, particularly in terms of TVET quality, benchmarking and the infusion of new technologies into national TVET programmes and systems. This is in alignment with the African Union’s Agenda 2063 and the expectations it has for the TVET sector in generating much-needed momentum for sustainable economic growth and development on the continent.

The event entailed a series of capacity-building programmes with a skills competition, aimed at promoting the importance and raising the quality of skills development, from which the local organizing and management teams, training institutions, trainers and experts stand to benefit immensely.

Altogether 71 participants from the Democratic Republic of Congo, Ghana, Kenya, Uganda, Madagascar, Namibia, Rwanda, South Africa, Zambia, and Team Refugee, participated in 16 skills. More than 300 continental and international delegates participated in the Skills Conference, which took place under the theme: “Promoting Skills Development in the 21st Century for Sustainable Economic Growth and African Ownership”.

The Skills Exhibition included 45 local and international training institutions and industry exhibitors, targeting youth-in-school; young adults aged 17 to 25; parents and guardians; youth organizations, leaders and influencers; and educators.

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