Learning to Earning empowers a new generation of job seekers
“I had to drop out of school in Grade 10 to support my family,” says 20-year-old Momen. “But I never wanted to leave. All I could think about while working was the day I could go back to education.”
As a school drop-out, Momen found himself unqualified for skilled work and working long hours cleaning tables in a local restaurant for low wages just to keep food on his family's table.
His situation is similar to a large number of young people in Jordan who struggle to find meaningful work and a decent income in an economy with slow growth and high rates of youth unemployment. Making the situation even more challenging is the serious mismatch between young people's skills and the current demands of the job market - a situation impacting even the most well educated youth.
“I wanted to save my future and I knew that the work I was doing was not the answer," Momen, 20
Although eager to expand his horizons, Momen initially felt lost (“I didn’t have a great education. I had no skills,” he explains) until he discovered he was eligible for a UNICEF scholarship, supported by the PROSPECTS partnership from the Dutch Ministry of Foreign Affairs, at Luminus Technical University College (LTUC).
When offered a place on the electrical skills course, he wasn't immediately convinced that being an electrician was the right career for him. But, determined to improve his life, he took a chance.
“I threw myself into it and, thankfully, the passion and dedication of the amazing teachers here rubbed off on me,” he says, beeming. Now, Momen is the first student to arrive for class every day.
Six months into the course and Momen is already close to having the right skills to enter the job market.
“There are really not enough words for me to use to show how grateful I am to every single person who has been involved in giving me this opportunity.
“Everyone has believed in me and now I truly believe that there is hope for me thanks to this course."
The Dutch Ministry of Foreign Affairs, through the PROSPECTS partnership, is empowering a new generation of young job seekers through its support for the UNICEF Learning to Earning programme, helping young people from vulnerable communities to develop transferable, job ready skills and find meaningful employment.