38 39 NACOFU contributes to the reduction of youth un- employment in Uganda and Kenya. This Ugandan NGO helps young people showcase their academic, en- trepreneurial, and cultural skills and competences to po- tential employers. It enables young East Africans to ac- cess employer’s requirements and match qualifications with skills.The platform provides informative newsfeeds to users and links entrepreneurial experts and organisa- tions with interested jobseekers. EASSI, the Eastern African Sub-regional Support Initiative for the Advancement of Women, and Sauti Africa, a mobile-based trade information platform, have partnered up to pilot a mobile-based trade information platform. Their goal is to help small traders to exercise their rights as citizens of the EAC – to be able to trade legally, safely, and profitably across the EACs estimated 30 formal border crossing points. Through their SMS/USSD-based platform, traders can access tailored trade and market information, including border procedures and documen- tation requirements, as well as exchange rates and market prices for commonly traded com- modities. The platform also enhances social accountability by allowing traders to anonymously report incidents of bribery and (sexual) harassment at border crossings. Simon Ntege, 28 years I worked two jobs. I was a secondary school computer trainer in order to bring in the money, but I made sure that it never interfered with my studies. Together with my partner Bonny we had just graduated and knew the agony of unsuccessfully hunting for our dream jobs. The idea that instantly came to our mind was an alternate to alleviate the stark case of youth employment in East Africa. We decided to use our software engineering skills to create a youth employment application addressing joblessness in Uganda and Kenya. We locked ourselves in together for two months and stayed up late brainstorm- ing and seeking guidance from our old professors. Middy Amule, Ugandan trader in Busia I have four children and support them with my trade of hand-made jewelry across the border in Kenya. The Sauti mobile platform is really helpful to us women traders. Sometimes I would buy commodities across the border not knowing if they are prohibited since there was no information on this. I had to learn the hard way, sometimes losing my goods or paying hefty bribes. Some of my women colleagues had to offer sex if they could not pay the bribe. Crossing through the smuggling route was horrendous. With Sauti now, at the comfort of my couch or kitchen, I can get all the customs information I need right in my cheap old phone. I’m now more confident to personally clear my goods and I feel a lot safer and dignified going through the formal border. In case someone denies my rights, through that same phone, I can report them and make my voice heard. Partners