TotalEnergies supporting growth of internationally certified craftsmanship in Uganda
Launched in 2018, the welders training programme by TotalEnergies EP Uganda has trained and certified 350 youth from the Albertine and Pipeline route districts, in courses leading to international certification in 2G, 3G/4G, and 6G Coded Welding including Occupational Health, Safety & Environment and Entrepreneurship training.
A programme that attracts participation of female youth
Moureen Kabaso from Hoima District is one of the over 20% female students undertaking the welders training programme by TotalEnergies. She started out with barely any training and background in welding, but today she is charting a new path in the industry as one of the few internationally certified female welders in the country. She can set machines, sharpen them and also use filler rods, skills she has acquired from Sunmaker Energy (Uganda) Limited, one of the partner institutions undertaking the TotalEnergies welder training and certification programme.
Upon successful completion of the training, Kabaso hopes to pass on the same skills she has acquired to her peers and other youth interested in acquiring welding skills and craftsmanship.
Working with Ugandan institutions and promoting knowledge transfer
TotalEnergies EP Uganda partnered with Ugandan service providers; Solid Rock Life and Business, Sunmaker Energy Uganda Limited and the Training Assessment and Skilling Center (TASC), to undertake welding training and certification to international standards.
Students in the programs are being trained by Ugandan instructors complemented by international experts as Quality Control (QC) Supervisors and welders. The programme also covers HSE training of the identified trainees aimed at enhancing the level of knowledge and practices of occupational Health, Safety, and Environment, (HSE).
The international trainers help to enhance the capacity of not only the Ugandan trainers but also the students as well through knowledge transfer. The programme is closely monitored by a German development agency GIZ under their program E4D which provides technical advice for the project as well as integrating some of their own programs such as the Entrepreneurship and Soft Skills training, drawing on its experience in developing, designing, and deploying skill development programs.
“During the training, welders are taken through theory sessions, where they advance to the practical session of welding carried out in a workshop. They are taken through three (3) levels of welder training which are catalysts to attaining the highest level of welding i.e. the 6G coded welding. Students are then assessed and awarded with local and international certification.” Mohamed Galal, an Internationally Certified welding instructor at Sunmaker Energy (Uganda) Limited.
Ensuring sustainable impact of the programme
As part of our commitment to ensure sustainable impact of the programmes, the training institutions further monitor the progress of the students’ post-graduation and certification to ensure that there is a positive impact on their livelihoods either through employment, entrepreneurship, or further training. The institutions provide transition assistance where possible through placements to existing opportunities in the various sectors of the economy.
“I am not going to sit home but continue to practice and perfect my skills so that I am a world-class welder,” says Collins Mwesigwa, one of the 6G coded welding trainees from Masindi District.
“While the focus is on the emerging sector, especially infrastructure in oil and gas, we are also interested in fitting them in the existing job markets, so that they do not have to wait for only the opportunities in the oil and gas sector,” says Benjamin Mulinda, a technical expert at GIZ.