On October 14th, the Uganda Youth and Adolescent Health Forum (UYAHF) organised a training for young people on career development and personal branding to build their capacity and enhance their skills and readiness for better career opportunities in the current competitive job market.

The training brought together 20 change champions whose capacity was built on key areas such as professional CV writing, resume and job application writing, social media marketing and personal branding in order to prepare and position them for more career opportunities. 

During the training, Joanne Lunkuse, the coordinator for advocacy and partnerships at UYAHF, facilitated a session on CV, resume, and job application letter writing.

She kicked off the sessions by allowing young people to first share their knowledge of CV writing, whether they have written job application letters before and what they know about a resume.

“Some of the young people have knowledge about CV writing, while others have written at least one or two job application letters.

“Resume was totally a new thing to them, but through group discussions and guidance, we were able to tackle all these, and I gave them assignments to individually come up with each of these documents and share them with me through email to see whether they were able to come up with them on their own,” explained Joanne.

During her presentations, she also highlighted the basic errors and mistakes to avoid while writing official application letters and the language used, as well as how to skim for opportunities in the different spaces.

During the session on personal branding by Haruna Musa, the communication and innovation officer for UYAHF, he noted that personal branding is the most important factor for a young person who is looking to build a successful career or business.

“We are currently in a world where almost everyone has a diploma or a degree in a specific career. Employers are now looking for candidates with something extra that makes them unique,” he added.

Musa explained that there are many ways to develop a personal brand, but it starts with knowing who one is and what one wants to be known for. He further mentioned that by taking the time to define one’s personality in terms of expertise, character, and public image, one can set him or herself up for success in a career and beyond.

Following the training, the young people acknowledged that the training had changed their perspective on viewing the job market and career opportunities.

According to Blick Williams Wandwasi, a peer educator, he thought that seeking jobs was all about having the best papers and having an influential person in a given position.

“I have learnt that seeking a job is beyond passing with good grades at University, the syndrome of ‘technical know-who’, you need to have character, position yourself well and also show to the world what you can do best,” he added.

Asakale Esther Norah, a youth champion from Touch a Heart Uganda, also revealed that she has been shying away from job opportunities where she saw one of the requirements as a resume.

“Initially. I did not understand the word “resume”. I thought it was a qualification document of its own. But from today’s training, it is clear and I have learnt how to develop one. Combined with the topic on personal branding, this is a great step to our career growth, “Esther said.

The young people thanked UYAHF for organising such an important training and committed to sharing the knowledge learnt from the training with their peers in their respective communities and schools.