NGO in PNG provides training for disadvantaged youth
A Papua New Guinea NGO details its efforts to provide training opportunities for disadvantaged youth.
Earlier this month we heard that the first 200 students had graduated from training schemes for unemployed youth run by the city council in the capital of Papua New Guinea, Port Moresby.
The training is aimed at providing urban youth with income from temporary employment opportunities and to increase their employability.
A more elaborate scheme is provided by the Ginigoada Foundation - an NGO focussing on disadvantaged youth.
The Foundation's manager, Mike Field, spoke with Don Wiseman about their work.
MIKE FIELD: We provide short term skills training which would help these young people look at how they could actually create their own job, go into the informal sector, marketing. If there wasn't employment available they could somehow create a job for themselves and have a productive future.
DON WISEMAN: These would be jobs in the informal sector?
MF: Well originally because there was not a lot of formal employment available it was helping people in marketing skills, it was helping people look at how they could use whatever was around them to develop a sound income, so yes marketing, crafts, art, those sort of things.
DW: How long a period of training?
MF: Well, there was an induction period which was normally a short term workshop on basic business skills and from there we would enrol them into a vocational training centre where they would do a course either in welding or carpentry, small marine engines - a whole array of a different type of training, which would be somewhere between 4 to 12 weeks.
DW: It is still continuing?
MF: It is still continuing. About three years ago we commenced mobile training. The Asia Foundation provided finance through the Give to Asia programme to launch two mobile training programmes, and this sort of changed the direction of Ginigoada from bringing in youth just to short term skills training to us going out into the community and delivering training ourselves. Today we have three adult training buses (we call them buses but some are vans - one for children - and we have three adult training buses) right now in the city of Port Moresby, going about delivering training programmes.
DW: Kids on the street has been a huge problem, particularly in Port Moresby for many years. How many thousands of kids are in this situation where they might need this sort of preparation?
MF: I think we maybe need to redefine the word 'kids' because some of our kids are 30 or 40 years of age, so they are big kids. But if you look at the demographics of the city there is potentially 100 or 200 thousand people who would benefit from this type of training.
DW: And you have dealt with how many over the period that you have been operating?
MF: I am not sure of the exact figures to date but I can tell that last year alone, in 2013, collectively we enrolled more than 13 thousand into our training programmes.
DW: Do you have information on the success rate?
MF: We are doing surveys to try and glean that information. Sometimes it is very difficult.
DW: But you know that it has led to work for some at least?
MF: Oh absolutely. Because we are working here with the Port Moresby Chamber of Commerce and Industry and through their many different member companies we have been able to place people into on-job training, which is an eight week paid experience, and we also place many into direct employment and we are finding that a lot of the companies are seeing these young men and young women as potential long term employees.
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