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Immersing People in Results Across Africa

KYEOP Welder


  • Investments in people can make a remarkable difference in lives, livelihoods, and communities.
  • A 360-degree virtual immersive experience brings human capital projects in Africa to life.
  • Field visits by stakeholders, particularly parliamentarians, are critical for demonstrating the value of IDA interventions in the world’s poorest nations.

Esther Karisa, a young woman from a small village in Kilifi County on the coast of Kenya, was weary from the long hours and low pay of planting trees. With limited education, she saw her job prospects as scarce and had lost hope for finding something better.

Then she heard about the Kenya Youth Employment and Opportunities Project (KYEOP), a Government of Kenya program supported by the World Bank that prepares vulnerable youth aged 18-29 for the labor market and self-employment.

Through KYEOP, Esther completed six months of training to become a welder and received a small business grant, which she used to buy equipment and open her own workshop. “It came from my heart and I worked hard, proving that women can do even more,” she said. “I am proud to be a woman doing welding.” She now supports her family and employs other young welders in her community.

KYEOP betters the living standard of the people that help our country grow. It has brought back hope that there is a good life ahead.
Esther Karisa
Esther Karisa
KYEOP Beneficiary

Esther’s inspiring story is just one of several featured in the immersive experience Investing in People, Transforming Communities: Human Capital Results in Africa jointly conceived and produced by the World Bank Global Parliamentary Engagement, Africa Human Development, and Eastern and Southern Africa regional teams.

The site takes users on a creative virtual field visit to demonstrate how investments in human capital can change not only lives, but whole communities through four distinct projects across Kenya, Madagascar, and Rwanda – from basic education continuity during the pandemic, to youth jobs, to child and maternal nutrition, to COVID-19 vaccines delivery.

Visitors can experience International Development Association (IDA) outcomes from anywhere in the world by immersing themselves in project contexts, hearing about their impact from beneficiaries and stakeholders, and seeing concrete results and useful statistics.

Sneak peak

"Investing in People, Transforming Communities" showcases four human capital projects in three countries.

The site was officially launched publicly during a global virtual event that reproduced the feel of a live field visit. Participants heard from actors on the ground involved in KYEOP, including a project beneficiary, the World Bank project Task Team Leader, government officials, and a private sector partner.

“Field visits have always been a unique opportunity to showcase project results to partners and stakeholders, garnering support for IDA operations. While nothing can compare to in-person experiences, a virtual format opens projects to an unlimited number of stakeholders and partners, positioning the World Bank as an effective, open, and inclusive institution,” notes Amit Dar, Director, Strategy and Operations in the Eastern and Southern Africa Region of the World Bank.  “Virtual visits can also make challenging sites, such as remote or fragile and conflict-affected areas, more accessible.”

Pre-pandemic, field visits allowed legislators from around the world to witness the development process firsthand and to dialogue with local experts, communities, stakeholders, and government officials. As stressed by Liam Byrne MP, UK and Chair of the Parliamentary Network on the World Bank and IMF, “Parliamentarians are important partners to the World Bank in achieving meaningful and sustainable development outcomes. We shape policies, approve financing, oversee our governments, and integrate citizen voices into programs and projects. We therefore need to see for ourselves how the resources we make available are being used.”

For Members of Parliament (MPs) from donor countries, who decide and allocate ODA budgets, visits show the value of IDA for their money. For recipient country MPs, it is a chance for South-South exchange of solutions that can be adapted to their country contexts. Local visits for MPs in client countries can also be highly effective in supporting their parliamentary oversight duties and encouraging them to advocate for World Bank programs among their constituents.

The crucial role of parliamentarians in the success of development initiatives, as well as the roles of other stakeholders, including Civil Society, Faith Organizations, and the private sector, can be enhanced throughout project visits, a point this virtual experience helps to underscore.



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