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“Showing people that they aren’t alone”

Kawsu Sillah is the national coordinator and head of the advisory centre.

“Showing people that they aren’t alone”

Kawsu Sillah is the national coordinator at the Gambian-German Advisory Centre for Jobs, Training and Reintegration (GGAC). In an interview, he talks about the centre’s work.

Who do you and your team advise?

We advise people who’re thinking about returning to The Gambia as well as the local population, in other words people who’re already here. Young people without a job, refugees and people who are internally displaced are also very welcome. Our services are free of charge.

How do you support these people who ask for your advice?

My team and I provide wide ranging advice. Some people come to the GGAC because they’re looking for a job. We also give them advice on how to start their own business. We give them the latest information about our programme – our free training opportunities or professional development courses. The services that we offer are customised to individual needs and help them with their social and economic reintegration.

The GGAC service includes training in solar energy.

What opportunities do you see in The Gambia?

The Gambia’s economy is dominated by the service and agricultural sectors. We offer a range of training courses relating to these sectors, so that they can start a new career or learn new skills. But we also offer qualifications in areas like solar energy and construction, as well as the information and communication technologies. They can even train to be a welder. Our range of courses is very diverse.

Which services are currently being provided by the centre?

1. Job and training opportunities in The Gambia: we provide information, support and individual counselling in this area. The centre and its partners help individuals to be successful in the Gambian job market and we assist people who are looking for professional development, a practical training position, training courses or opportunities for starting a business.

2. We support returnees with their new start in The Gambia by offering advice and qualifications for their reintegration.

3. We advise people on their options for regular migration to Germany: this includes up-to-date and reliable information on aspects like academic opportunities, scholarships, work and internship opportunities.

Do you also offer psychosocial support?

Yes, we have initial discussions with the people who seek our advice and can then refer them to our partner organisations for suitable psychosocial support.

How can these people get access to your services?

Anyone interested can get in touch via email, by phone or on Facebook. All the contact details are available on our website, which can also be used to arrange a personal consultancy appointment.

What motivates you in your work?

Our task is to work with people from the various target groups – and it’s also our passion. My team and I look forward to helping the individuals who come to us. We empower them if they want to be self-employed, or refer them to the right contacts if they’re looking for a job. We jointly discuss their goals and show them how to write a good CV. What really motivates us all is when we see that someone has found a job, or if they feel strong enough for a new start after psychosocial counselling. We show people that they aren’t alone. We help them through the reintegration process. This gives them hope that they can actually take part in the social and economic development in The Gambia.

As of: 11/2022

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