Submitted by: Institut international de Formation des Entrepreneurs Gestionnaires
Implemented country: Togo
Title: Reducing Youth Unemployment Helps Protect the Environment and Saves Endangered Species
In Togo, people would like to kill two birds with one stone. On the one hand, by reducing youth unemployment, and on the other hand by ensuring environmental protection by using gas instead of wood for cooking. The JENVIGAZ helps young people after they finish compulsory school so that they can start their own enterprises by selling gas bottles, which provides a livelihood for them and also contributes to the reduction of using fire wood and coal for cooking.
15,000 unemployed youth are part of this training program. More than 60 per cent of them were able to start up their own small company. Because 80 percent of urban households in Togo use coal and 95 percent of rural households use firewood for cooking, much needs to be done in terms of getting people to switch over to using gas. Koukougan A. Samuel APALOO knows why this is so important: Studies have shown that 30 percent of animal species in Togo have disappeared in the course of the last 30 years. Among the endangered species are the Java Tiger, the Mauritian Boa and many more. As a result of gathering and chopping down trees for firewood more and more animal habitats are endangered.
18,402,746 euros have already been invested in this project. Much emphasis is placed on information, training, and creating awareness. Koukougan Apaloo feels that people should wake up and take their lives in their own hands. They should be capable of influencing their own destiny in a positive way, get out of poverty and protect their environment so that they can be able to live a good life in the long term.
“We know that 'the gap between poverty and prosperity is ignorance' and 'the bridge which leads firm poverty to prosperity is knowledge'."
Koukougan A. Samuel Apaloo