Creating Opportunities and Realizing Potential
Last week I moderated an an informal discussion with South Sudanese youth in Juba on the subject of Creating Opportunities and Realizing Potential. The forum was organized by Junub Open Space-JOS led by Emmanuel Lobijo Justine
I told the youth that success or “Making it “ is the product of opportunities matching with one’s potential. I spent a good chunk of my time narrating to them my own story of how I got the chance to study IT in Kenya, a stage that shaped close to 80% of my current professional life.
In essence we (Youth) work hard day and night to realize and develop our potential in order for us to meet the right opportunities and utilize them to get to the next stage.
Having a lot of potential with no opportunities is of no use, the same way having available opportunities without realizing your potential is a recipe for disappointments.
I asked the youth what they think about availability of opportunities in South Sudan , the answers were mixed, some said opportunities are there but corruption, nepotism and favoritism deprive those who are qualified and rewards those who “Know someone”.
The youth also cited the fact that in South Sudan most young folks are looking for white colar jobs, the obsession with status mixed with constant fear of being seen doing “low” jobs is making some youth to focus on being in an office as opposed to starting with what is doable and available .
Though not mentioned directly, conflict and the current crisis continues to be the biggest elephant in the room. The war has changed the economic landscape drastically. Making it hard for people to get something that will help them earn a living and have a healthy life. Hopelessness is at all time high.
With some few recommendations on the way forward, we agreed to hold this forum on a monthly basis.
Next month we will be discussing entreprenuership, cohesion and accepting each other. We plan to invite many experts to help shape the discussion and advise the participants accordingly.