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Digital Vocational Education and Training for Young Africans

Digital Vocational Education and Training for Young Africans

SERVE and Young Africa have come together to create the ‘Digital Vocational Education and Training for Young Africans’ project. 

This project will take place in 2023 and 2024.

SERVE and Young Africa have worked together since 2008.

Graduation Day at Young Africa Mozambique

Donor and Partner

What will this project achieve?

The highlights of the ‘Digital Vocational Education and Training for Young Africans‘ project are building the eLearning platform and developing a Graduate Toolbox.

The project upholds the right to education for vulnerable youth across Zimbabwe, Mozambique, Zambia and Namibia.

It will ensure quality access to skills training for over 8000 students. These students will be able to realise their full potential and fight poverty.

Stay tuned for updates.

Working with Spur Technologies

Together with Young Africa we look forward to working with Spur Technologies to develop the eLearning Platform for Young Africa students in Zimbabwe, Mozambique, Zambia and Namibia.
Spur Technologies will also integrate an improved digital monitoring and evaluation system to keep track of students’ progress.
Students in 11 African countries will gain from this work through Young Africa’s programme dissemination work.
This enhances the learning experience for students across 14 disciplines. The platform will also help Young Africa staff deliver online training in life skills, entrepreneurship and ICT. Read contracts here and here.

Read more

The ‘Digital Vocational Education and Training for Young Africans‘ project will be implemented by SERVE and Young Africa in 2023 and 2024.

SERVE is an international development NGO based in Ireland. SERVE’s work focuses on young people, especially in the area of vocational training and employment.

Young Africa is a confederation of independent NGOs and includes Young Africa International Netherlands, Young Africa International Africa Hub (Zimbabwe), Young Africa Zimbabwe, Young Africa Mozambique, Young Africa Zambia and Young Africa Namibia.

Young Africa provides holistic and accredited Vocational Education and Training (VET) to marginalised youth through 6-12 month training courses in 46 disciplines, life skills, entrepreneurship and Information and Communications Technology (ICT). Young Africa has a dissemination network with 23 organisations across 11 African countries whereby it shares successful models of its work.

SERVE and Young Africa have worked together since 2008.

The ‘Digital Vocational Education and Training for Young Africans‘ project is co-funded by the EU Erasmus+ Fund, SERVE and Young Africa.


SERVE is the Coordinator, Young Africa International (Young Africa Netherlands and Young Africa Hub) are Beneficiaries, and the four Young Africa Affiliates are Affiliated Entities. Young Africa’s dissemination network will also benefit from this project.

The objectives of the ‘Digital Vocational Education and Training for Young Africans‘ project are:

(1) Coordinating implementation of the Project Workplan and achievement of Project Deliverables;

(2) Young Africa’s eLearning Platform available for 8,150 disadvantaged youth across Southern and Eastern Africa;

(3) Young Africa’s Postgraduate Service Toolbox (PGST) contributes to a substantial increase in the percentage of Young Africa graduates in employment;

(4) 4 Young Africa Affiliates and 23 dissemination partners using the PGST across Africa;

(5) 2 new Young Africa models (eLearning & Postgraduate Service Toolbox) will be integrated into the Young Africa Monitoring, Evaluation and Learning system and 73 Young Africa and dissemination partner staff trained in the Monitoring, Evaluation and Learning system leading to improved data driven performance;

(6) Evaluate the impact, successes, challenges and lessons learned of the Project; 

(7) Increase awareness about Digital Vocational Education and Training (VET) in Africa amongst 50 policymakers and 3,500 members of the public in Ireland and the Netherlands.

The project will be delivered through the following five Work Packages:

(1) Coordination and Management;

(2) Development of the Young Africa eLearning Platform;

(3) Development of the Young Africa Postgraduate Service Toolbox

(4) Improvement of the Young Africa Monitoring Evaluation and Learning System;

(5) Impact and Dissemination.

Stay tuned for updates. Sign up to the newsletter.

Click here to see our roadmap.

Project Resources

We have attached the Terms of Reference here.

The induction meeting for the ‘Digital Vocational Education and Training for Young Africans’ project was held on 14th Feb 2023. You can read the minutes here.

You can read the Communications and Dissemination Strategy for this project here.

Project Reports

Report on Post Graduation Services in Vocational Training in Southern Africa.


Funded by the European Union. Views and opinions expressed are however those of the author(s) only and do not necessarily reflect those of the European Union or the European Education and Culture Executive Agency (EACEA) – the Granting Authority. Neither the European Union nor the granting authority can be held responsible for them.

Run-a-Muck for SERVE

Run-a-Muck Challenge

Saturday MARCH 4TH 2023

Days to Go

0 Days

March 4, 2023


Coolcarrigan Estate

Co. Kildare

Entry Fee

€40.00 per person

Run-a-muck Challenge

Looking for Irish charity challenge ideas? Want to raise money for charity? Join the Run-a-Muck challenge on March 4th for a fun mud run challenge to support SERVE.

Run-a-muck is one of the best charity challenges in Ireland. It is a 5.5km run through the muck while crossing 50 obstacles.  

SERVE has 20 years of experience in international development. This challenge has been completed by over 50 SERVE volunteers over the years. They did it to show their solidarity by fundraising and enduring the physical hardship of this challenge.

This challenge represents the hardships of the communities we work with in our 7 partner countries. Help SERVE to help others. 

Your fundraising target is €100/£95. All funds raised will provide:

  • * education and employment skills,
  • * entrepreneurship opportunities,
  • * community development and
  • * access to wheelchairs

When you complete this event you will receive a certificate, a SERVE T- shirt and a water bottle to show you our deep gratitude and to mark your achievement.

Support Irish charity SERVE, and sign up for this challenge today!

Share This

this event is in aid of:

SERVE's work in 7 countries

SERVE’s varied programmes impact marginalised young people in India, Zimbabwe, Mozambique and Zambia.

For eg: SERVE works with partners to provide educational, entrepreneurship and skills training programmes for up to 5,000 young people in Zimbabwe and Mozambique to tackle the unemployment crisis.

All your queries

This challenge is for persons age 18+.

Runners must be in good health and have a reasonable fitness level.

Prior running experience is not essential, but training will be required in preparation for the event.

The booking fee is €36. Your fundraising target is €100/£95. 

The booking fee covers the following:

  • – registration costs,
  • – fundraising support from the SERVE team and
  • – light refreshments after the race

All the funds you raise will go to the work SERVE does in 7 countries to end poverty.


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Solidarity Buzz SERVE Team 2022

SERVE Solidarity Buzz ’22

2022 SERVE Solidarity Buzz Annual newsletter Solidarity is a firm and persevering determination to commit oneself to the common good. Working from the principle that


Rebecca sky dives for SERVE

Rebecca skydives for SERVE In the summer of 2022 past SERVE volunteer Rebecca Atkinson jumped off a plane safely to fulfill a life-long goal and

SERVE Solidarity Buzz ’22


SERVE Solidarity


Solidarity is a firm and persevering determination to commit oneself to the common good. Working from the principle that Charity is fine, but Justice is much betterSERVE during 2022 redoubled its efforts to support our international partners in Africa and Asia, helping to create educational and employment opportunities for thousands of young people while also proactively removing barriers for people with disabilities to ensure full participation in educational and employment programmes.

Supporting emergency relief projects in the Philippines, Zimbabwe, India, South Africa, and Ukraine, SERVE also helped deliver humanitarian support to COVID-impacted communities and vulnerable families afflicted by war.

From Pen-Pal initiatives connecting students in Ireland, Vietnam, Germany, and Zambia to a dynamic culture night at Scala, to new fundraising initiatives like the five-a-side soccer tournament in Cork- the furtherance of the Sustainable Development Goals drives all SERVE activities.

A heartfelt expression of gratitude to all the diverse pillars central to Team SERVE – our volunteers and staff, our generous benefactors, our partners in Ireland and overseas, our board members, and our friends. Blessings in abundance for Christmas 2022 and the new year.

Gerry O’Connor, Chairperson

Solidarity in Action

For a better world

Join us today in helping to provide equal opportunities for communities living in poverty across the globe.

Rebecca sky dives for SERVE

Rebecca skydives for SERVE

In the summer of 2022 past SERVE volunteer Rebecca Atkinson jumped off a plane safely to fulfill a life-long goal and to support our work. 

Rebecca Atkinson skiy dives for SERVE

Rebecca is currently studying in fourth year of Architectural Technology in TUD. Rebecca also plays camogie with my local club Good Counsel and is a cellist with the Comhaltas National Folk Orchestra. 

Rebecca’s volunteering journey began with SERVE in 2017 when she was in 5th year in Colaiste Cois Life. After a year of preparations with SERVE, her class when to volunteer with the Tsholofelo community in South Africa. 

Rebecca explains, “The whole process even before we got to South Africa was very educational and valuable as we learned the values and goals of SERVE as a charity and the importance of the type of work we would be doing in South Africa. The immersion program itself was an unforgettable experience and it still gives me goosebumps thinking about it! We stayed in the Tsholofelo community that was also home to some local South Africans who were the same ages as us. We painted and did groundwork in the two local creches during the day and in the evening, we did cultural exchanges and workshops. The whole experience gave me a rich knowledge and understanding of South Africa’s culture and history”. 

Rebecca has always wanted to go skydiving but had the fear of heights growing up. Today, Rebecca is not as afraid of heights and her friend suggested they do it together so that Rebecca could fulfill her dream.


Rebecca explains, “My friend & I found that the Irish Skydive Club in Kilkenny allows you to do a fundraiser for a charity. For me, it was a no-brainer that I would fundraise for SERVE. Since my immersion programme I have found SERVE very easy to donate to, I have asked for their gifts as presents for birthdays and Christmas and bought them for friends and family, a personal favourite of mine is their cookbook! Because all the donations I had made to SERVE were small I thought the skydive would be a great way to make my friends and family aware of SERVE again.”


Rebecca raised €436 for SERVE. SERVE Programmes Manager Paula Quigley said, “We can’t thank Rebecca enough for being a champion of the Global Goals and supporting the work we do. She overcame a personal challenge and fulfilled her dream. She has done this in solidarity with partners we work with in Zambia, Zimbabwe, Mozambique, and India. Rebecca has helped raise vital funds for SERVE and it will help us continue our work with them.” 

Rebecca adds, “I really admire SERVE’s values in development and work as a charity and am still very grateful for the immersion programme I was a part of, hopefully that won’t be my last or my last skydive either!”

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Irish charity SERVE works in South Africa with Tsholofelo

SERVE and Tsholofelo

SERVE’s Development Work with Tsholofelo Dressmaking skills training class at Freedom Park About Tsholofelo Tsholofelo has a long history of working with people in squatter camps

become a donor

Donate to SERVE

Join us today in helping to provide equal opportunities for communities living in poverty across the globe.

Thank you UCC 98.3FM!

Thank you UCC 98.3FM

 SERVE’s Nollaig Hulme spoke to past SERVE intern and volunteer Catriona Reid on UCC 98.3 FM.

(Right) Nollaig and Catriona in the UCC 98.3 FM studio and (left) Catriona in a giant flip flop earlier this year

become a donor

Donate to SERVE

Join us today in helping to provide equal opportunities for communities living in poverty across the globe.

Huge wins at Cork Volunteer Awards 2022

Huge wins at Cork Volunteer Awards 2022

SERVE volunteers Philip Hulme received the South City Volunteer Award and Sinéad Mulry received the Student Award at the Cork Volunteer Awards 2022

SERVE huge wins at Cork Volunteer Awards 2022
Team SERVE with (3rd from left) Philip Hulme with Sinead Mulry (2nd from right)

The SERVE team attended the fourth annual Cork Volunteer Awards Ceremony at the Kingsley Hotel on 4 November. The awards recognise volunteers across a wide range of categories in Cork City and County and is run by Cork Volunteer Centre.

Two of our wonderful volunteers were awarded on the night, Philip Hulme received the South City Volunteer Award and Sinéad Mulry received the Student Award. It was great to see our volunteers receive awards and acknowledgment for all the hard work they do for SERVE and of course a chance to celebrate with their friends and family on night.

Sinead Mulry  has volunteered with SERVE since 2019  and is a proactive leader of the SERVE @ Home Cork group. Sinead joined SERVE as an intern in 2020 and during lock down helped publish the SERVE’d Up Cook-book. Sinead continues to offer her helping hand to SERVE regularly.

Sinead says, “When I started with SERVE, it was the start of the pandemic… During my time with SERVE, I did a bit of everything – anything that could be done to raise awareness. My favourite thing about SERVE is the people in it…. They are what make SERVE a beautiful environment to volunteer in.” You can watch the full video featuring our word of thanks to Sinead on Facebook here.

The awards ceremony was a lovely evening to come together with other voluntary and charitable organisations and to celebrate the great work volunteers do all over Cork. Congratulations to Ini Usanga of Love and Care for People who won the overall C103 Cork Volunteer of the Year.

Best of Luck also to our volunteer Philip Hulme who has been nominated for a Volunteer Ireland Award.

Philip has been part of SERVE since 2003 volunteering in Rustenburg, South Africa – where he drove the bus for the volunteers. He is also an enthusiastic member of the SERVE family. Philip is a man of wonderful fundraising ideas like the recently held 5-a-side Soccer Tournament. We’re grateful for his generosity and creativity. You can watch the full video featuring our word of thanks to Philip on Facebook here.

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become a donor

Donate to SERVE

Join us today in helping to provide equal opportunities for communities living in poverty across the globe.

SERVE Christmas Appeal 2022

Every Gift Matters

Donate to


Don't leave anyone behind this Christmas.

Donate €30 to SERVE this Christmas to help people like Silna, Marília and Irshad  – three of the many people who have benefited from the work we do.

Your donation will

  1. Fight poverty
  2. Tackle disability stigma
  3. Improve vulnerable communities

When you donate to SERVE you give many disadvantaged people a chance to prosper through access to education and community development. 

Meet the people we help

We would like you to meet SilnaMarília and Irshad – who have all benefitted from SERVE’s support. They share about themselves to help you understand the impact of the work SERVE does.

Where does the money go?

80% of all Christmas donations will go directly towards our development programmes with our partners. 

Your donation will give vulnerable people like SilnaMarília and Irshad a helping hand to overcome their challenges.

We do this by working with our partners to provide:

  • Access to Quality Education
  • Entrepreneurship Training
  • Disability Awareness Training
  • Community Development

100% of proceeds from all Solidarity Gifts will go directly to the communities are partners work in. 

We work with our partners to identify their needs to deliver access to quality education in vulnerable communities. Some of the programmes and types of initiatives we support financially are as follows:

  • school improvement – this could be infrastructure, equipment, materials etc,
  • capacity building for teachers and trainers,
  • scholarships for students and
  • various skills training opportunities for women and young people

There’s an unemployment crisis in southern Africa and our partners in Zimbabwe and Mozambique tackle this challenge through entrepreneurship training for young people.

Entrepreneurship training informs graduates how to start a business, how to manage funds and equips them to hire other people.

SERVE financially supports new graduates through micro-credit loans and a Graduate Kit.

SERVE works with Association of People with Disability, Bangalore, India (APD).

APD runs a programme that raises critical disability awareness by engaging school children in sensitisation training, an experiential learning experience that allows the participants to get a glimpse into the challenges and obstacles faced by those living with a disability in India.

SERVE offers financial support to run this initiative to actively end stigma of disability.

SERVE understands the complexities that vulnerable communities face, and our partnership based approach to international development means we can fund locally led initiatives and programmes ran by our partners on the ground. This means we support communities based on their needs and support them in the most sustainable way.

For e.g. we have financially supported the Badjao tribe in Cebu, Philippines to gain access to health care and improved living conditions. We have also sent emergency relief funding to the Badjao community after Typhoon Rai and to Young Africa in Beira after Cyclone Idai.

Your donation will help SERVE to continue doing this type of work.


SERVE’s overseas volunteering summer programmes are on hold owing to the global Covid-19 pandemic. However, SERVE offers new local volunteering opportunities. Please join our mailing list to stay updated on new volunteering programmes and opportunities. 

Join our


Subscribe today for free and stay up to date with our latest news and events.

Donate to support young women like Silna

Every gift matters

Donate to


Donate €30 to support young people to fight poverty.

Meet Silna.

Silna lives in a stilt house on the shores of Alaska Mambaling in Cebu city.

Silna’s home is a one-room house made of light materials and galvanized iron roofing. Silna says, “We use an open pit toilet. My mother, my siblings, and their families live with me. I am the youngest of four siblings. My father, a fisher man, passed in 2008 due to heart conditions – and so I have been working hard since then to support my family.” Despite this, Silna achieved something incredible this year, she graduated with a Bachelor of Science in Social Work. This is something not many have achieved in the Badjao Tribe, but she has paved her own way and she is a role model for young people in her community now. 

For Silna playtime is a luxury that she does not have. Silna’s everyday life is filled with dreams, hopes and curiosities. 

“The point is we all face incredible challenges; we do our best to overcome them and then we’re able to live our best life. I wake up at 6:30am, do the chores, fetch water, and get ready for school to go straight to my class. From school, I go home. Rest a little and prepare for dinner. Wash up and lights out. On Saturdays, I do the laundry and go to Nano Nagle Centre for the weekly assignments. Sundays are for sorting laundry from the previous day’s work and being at the little store.” – Silna, Badjao tribe, Philippines

Silna’s dedication and commitment to improve her life is no short of an inspiration.

SERVE began working with the Presentation sisters in the Badjao community in 2003 in the area of community development. One of the biggest challenges of the Badjao community is access to education for girls especially because they are expected to marry at a very young age.

The Nano Nagle Childcare and Learning Centre was officially opened in 2008 and is the home of education inside the Badjao community. The Presentation Sisters and Nano Nagle Team offered Silna a scholarship to finish her studies.

“Who would have thought that someone like me could finish college and not get married at my age? For me, it was a dream come true. My greatest achievement so far in my whole life.”

Silna explains, “They guided every step of my way in achieving my goal. They were very instrumental in shaping my values and goals in life. They helped and guided me in developing myself into becoming who I am today. They are like my second family. SERVE plays a big factor in my life. I was excited every time a group of SERVE volunteers arrived from Ireland. SERVE is like an aunty that always brings surprises, hugs, and smiles. It is with SERVE that I feel valued, loved, recognised, and accepted for who I really am, aside from the love and care given by the Nano Nagle Centre.”

SERVE’s work with the Badjao tribe is focused on improving housing, access to healthcare, supporting educational initiatives and sending volunteers to offer their time and skills where needed.

When you donate €30 to SERVE, you will be giving many youths like Silna the chance to prosper, to feel confident and achieve their dreams.  Please donate to SERVE to support young women like Silna or buy a Solidarity Gift of Resilience.

every Gift Matters

Donate to SERVE

“I know that so many people in Ireland support SERVE to support girls like me. And I am very thankful for all their support; may it be money or moral support.

Just keep on believing that there are people like me who needed not just your money for support but also your presence.

This will give us a lifetime of inspiration and that is something that money cannot buy.” – Silna, Badjao tribe, Philippines

Scholarships for Young People in Africa

Every gift matters



Marília lives in Beira, Mozambique. She was able to overcome self-doubt and join Young Africa through a SERVE scholarship.

Meet Marília.

Marília lives in the 15th district of Chingussura in Beira, Mozambique. Marília recently graduated from Young Africa Mozambique through a scholarship from the Skills for Youth Resilience Programme (SYRP).

Marília completed the cosmetology course at Young Africa Mozambique. SERVE and Young Africa have worked in partnership since 2007 to help young people fight poverty through life skills, education, technical skills training and entrepreneurship skills.

Southern Africa is experiencing a severe unemployment crisis. The SYRP is a direct response to help young people in Zimbabwe and Mozambique gain technical skills that will allow them to transition to entrepreneurship. This programme helps the young people, with whom our partners work, to fight poverty. SERVE And Young Africa have together designed the Skills for Youth Resilience Programme (SYRP) to promote entrepreneurship through scholarships and relevant Graduate Kits.

“My dream is to grow and be an icon in my city and in my country, because if I am established in this business I will help in the training of disadvantaged young people to start their business.” – Marília, Beira, Mozambique

The young people in the communities where Young Africa work live with doubts because Marília told us that, “Many are afraid to approach Young Africa, thinking they don’t have the right to be there, but that’s not true because Young Africa supports everyone.”

Your donation supports the Skills for Youth Resilience Programme (SYRP) which ensure access to quality education and support to launch a small business.


“Young Africa and SERVE are important in my life journey. They have helped me a lot. When I received the scholarship, I was very emotional, I was afraid, but people motivated me by saying that I am capable.”

When you donate to SERVE, you will be giving many youths like Marília the chance to prosper, to feel confident and achieve their dreams. Your donation to SERVE will help create a ripple effect of confident young people fighting poverty.


Donate €30 to SERVE to provide crucial scholarships to young people fighting poverty in Africa or buy a Solidarity Gift of Quality Access to Education.

every Gift Matters

Donate to SERVE

Everyone has the right to dream and make those dreams come true even though it’s not easy at all. Every little help matters.

It’s a great feeling to know that people give you support. I can’t thank them enough. Marília, Beira, Mozambique

End Disability Stigma

Every gift matters

Donate to


Donate €30 to SERVE to raise critical disability awareness in Bangalore, India.

Meet Irshad.

Irshad lives with locomotor disability and uses a wheelchair. His home has stairs, and he sleeps in a convertible bed in the front room of the house.

When Irshad was older his father bought him a normal scooter. He got the alignment from Hyderabad, another city in India. His father joined it to the main scooter and made Irshad a customised vehicle in two days. Irshad is fortunate to have a family who see him as a full person undefined by the disability.

His family and Irshad have ended the stigma of disability among themselves with great help from SERVE and our partner, The Association of People with Disability (APD).

 SERVE and APD are working hard to end the stigma on disability through sensitising programmes and community education through outreach activities. APD are also campaigners for inclusion and disability rights.

 “You have supported so many others like me through APD. Do you know this is a huge thing because being a wheelchair user in India is very difficult – there is stigma and so many challenges.” 

In addition to this work APD offer numerous therapies and educational services on site. There’s a school for children who live with disabilities.

Irshad explains, “ I work at the Association of People with Disability, and you know I also did my primary school education here. So, it’s like I am starting at the beginning. I work in a department called MIS (Management Information System). I basically do all the registration for different programs here, I make reports of those programmes and also, I have my free coffee or green tea with no sugar that comes to my desk out of nowhere – it’s a great perk to have at work. I feel motivated knowing that I am financially independent, contributing to society and am so grateful for the life I have.“ 

When you donate €30 to SERVE, you will help more people like Irshad to overcome the stigma to live an independent life or buy a Solidarity Gift of a Specialised Wheelchair.

every Gift Matters

Donate to SERVE

I am very thankful to the people of Ireland for supporting my journey because you have supported APD. Do you know this is a huge thing because being a wheelchair user in India is very difficult – there is stigma and so many challenges.

With APD’s help, with your help I can think about my life with more confidence, and I am determined to stay focused in whatever I do.” – Irshad, Bangalore, India