Let’s Meet the Sustainability Impact Accelerator

NIR invited both members and other interested companies to meet the Sustainability Impact Accelerator programme staff and learn more in-depth about the programme and how it contributes to sustainable infrastructure projects in developing countries. EKN Exportkreditnämnden, a member and key stakeholder of the programme, also presented their views of how the SIA programme lowers risk and […]

Hybrid and remote work will have an impact on the workplace

The shift to a hybrid and remote world of work will have a big impact on the workplace and employee engagement.  In Kenya, SWP held the third Sustainable Business Platform (SBP) with business leaders and Human Resources practitioners from partner companies. The participants discussed and shared ways on optimizing productivity and engagement in a hybrid […]

Business and Human Rights

NIR invited its members to “Let’s Talk Business & Human Rights” with Dante Pesce, member of the UN Working Group on Business and Human Rights. This year marks the 10th anniversary of the UN Guiding Principles on Business and Human Rights (UNGPs). Their unanimous endorsement by the UN Human Rights Council was a landmark moment […]



lack of enabling environment for social dialogue at the workplace level, despite the provision of legislative acts that protect and promote workplace cooperation is a reoccuring issue  in Kenya. To implement good policy there must be a fertil ground.

Therefore SWP developed the UP!  project. Together with Swedish companies as an entry point, and with unions i South africa and Kenya. 

In Kenya SWP created the SWP UP! Programme targeting skills development of the union Shop Stewards from 18 companies in the Automotive sector in Kenya during 2021. As a result, the Stewards were able to use their skills to build trust and cooperation with management in new ways to avoid conflicts. 

A second cohort of training, in close cooperation with union AUKMW, takes place in 2022.

The training allows shop stewards to step out of their daily routines and understand their role and the purpose of their union, understand the labour market context, the laws that regulate relationships and the business itself. But on a human level, many shop stewards also highlighted that they feel respected as human beings, and that they have developed the skills to engage with supervisors and management and experience respect in professional relations. The experiences had deeply impressed them and helped to project the vision of dialogue and mutual respect and their own potential as a means to change workplaces.

The intervention of the SWP programme had a direct effect at the workplaces, where shop stewards listed several cases where they had managed to intervene and secure results in dialogue with management, avert crises or find solutions based on opportunities and the communication skills obtained during the SWP training. For the Amalgamated Metal Workers Unions in Kenya, the shop stewards pointed to how the training had enabled them to design their own strategies at the workplace in relation to supervisors and staff, and to achieve many concrete results.

Based on this shop steward upskilling, I feel confident that as a union we now have change ambassadors that will grow the industry, protect, and promote decent work principles for both the employer and the employees represented. And that disputes will be dealt with at the workplace level by though consultative dialogue.

Rose Omamo

General Secretary
Amalgamated Union of Kenya Metal Workers