Youth perceptions about government poverty alleviation interventions in Kigezi Sub County, Gomba District: a case of Youth Livelihood Program
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Poverty according to Kisamba Mugerwa (2004) defines it into absolute and relative where absolute is described as a minimum amount and quality necessary for life while relative is where a person stands relative to others on a poverty scale. Governments including the Government of Uganda embarked on introducing programs aimed at alleviating poverty among people to be uplifted from poverty line. Despite the fact that youth population takes the biggest percentage in Uganda, the government introduced youth livelihood program in FY 2014/15 as a way of improving skills development, self-employment and poverty alleviation amongst them. However although there were personal interests and ambitions among youths resulting from the angle they perceive programs to be, brought in positive and negative impacts towards the success of the program on the other hand, there were non-government programs in the area that youths engaged-in and attached meaning to like Bagagga Kwagalana however, the introduction of YLP still embraced as a relevant intervention of addressing poverty among youths. Therefore the study sought to investigate youth perceptions about government poverty alleviation interventions with focus on YLP. The research focused on finding out knowledge and awareness of youths on YLP, factors that influence beneficiaries’ perceptions about YLP, perceptions of beneficiaries about YLP and the role of perception in embracing YLP. A mixed approach involving both qualitative and quantitative approaches was used in the study. Individual interviews were used to obtain data from secondary respondents (key informants) while structured questionnaire were used to explore quantitative data from the primary respondents (youths).The study sample was 123 both beneficiaries and non-beneficiaries. The findings therefore revealed that 73.2% of youths believed that information concerning YLP was relevant, information availability was among factors that influenced youth perception about YLP. Basing on gender characteristic, males benefitted highly compared to female. The findings also showed that perceptions towards embracing YLP among youths played a great role in changing their mindset, motivation and realization of capabilities amongst themselves. Lastly, the researchers’ recommendations about the study were among others; mass mobilization of youths to engage in programs especially those that are designed to improve on their standards. This should be done by the program stake holders like CDO and LC Chairpersons in case of YLP. Disbursement of enough funds by the Government to help youths utilize their capacities towards alleviating poverty amongst themselves.