Skills2Live: Young Africa and IOM Launch Project to Increase Young People’s Life Skills and Employability

Migration and Youth

Ressano Garcia — Over a hundred young people stood ready today for the opening of the “Skills2Live” project and enrolled in vocational training courses, to take place in Ressano Garcia, a locality on the border with South Africa in southern Mozambique.

The Skills2Live pilot project aims to reach at least 120 young persons in Ressano Garcia, with reproductive and sexual health education, life skills and job skills so they are empowered to make healthy choices and lead productive lives.

The vocational training programme will offer a range of courses tailored to the local market needs and the interests of the youth themselves, such as pastry making, electrician skills and solar panel installation, car maintenance, beauty and hairdressing, carpentry and poultry breeding among others.  

The project is implemented by the training institute Young Africa, in partnership with the International Organization for Migration (IOM), and funded by the Embassy of the Kingdom of Netherlands in Mozambique.

The ceremony was opened by the Head of Cooperation at the Embassy of the Kingdom of Netherlands in Mozambique, Michiel van der Pompe, together with the Province Governor representative, His Excellence Júlio José Parruque, Young Africa Country Director, Aksana Varela Faustino, and IOM Officer in Charge, Laura Tomm-Bonde.

“At Young Africa we believe in the transformative power and energy of young people; and we strive to unlock their potential through training and empowerment. The focus on vocational training as a tool to combat youth unemployment is gaining momentum internationally, and now in Mozambique too,” said Aksana Aksana Varela FaustinoYoung Africa representative in Mozambique.

Young people constitute a large and fast-growing proportion of the population in Mozambique, as in most countries of Africa. They live in a rapidly changing world and they are confronted with problems and dilemmas. Young people face many challenges: teenage pregnancies, school dropouts, sexually transmitted diseases including HIV, gender-based violence, insufficient knowledge about family planning methods, lack of employability skills, unemployment and unable to raise an income. In short, they are in need of information and support to develop their full potential and live healthy and productive lives.

The Skills2Live project aims to demonstrate the unique potential of an integrated approach blending life skills, sexual reproductive health and rights education and technical vocational training to break the cycle of unemployment and socioeconomic vulnerabilities among adolescents and youth.

 “IOM has been working together with local and national authorities for more than three years in Ressano Garcia, to support vulnerable young people and migrants to access their rights to sexual and reproductive health information and services; but the socioeconomic environment shapes young people’s choices, and vulnerabilities can lead to risky behaviours. IOM is pleased to join Young Africa to address the interrelated needs of youth, so they develop their full potential,” said IOM Representative, Laura Tomm-Bonde.

“The Netherlands put young people in the centre of its new regional programme promoting healthier choices when it comes to sexual and reproductive rights. Young people expressed also the need to acquire skills to earn a decent income. By supporting Skills2Live we combine life skills and give young people opportunities to become employed or start a business. So, that they will live a healthier and decent life,” said Head of Cooperation of the Dutch Embassy in Maputo, Michiel van der Pompe.  

This project will be implemented through December 2020, in Ressano Garcia, Maputo province and in Chiure and Montepuez districts of Cabo Delgado province, where another 120 youths will receive similar training and support.

The Skills2Live project is implemented in Mozambique and in Zimbabwe. Young Africa works with a range of partners, including Frontline AIDS, Orange Corners and IOM Mozambique to integrate sexual and reproductive health and rights interventions into their technical and vocational training programme.

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For more information please contact:
IOM Mozambique: Sandra Black, +258 852 162 278
Young Africa: Norest Madeira, +258 875 053 180

  • Opening of the “Skills2Live” project, which will provide training in life skills and job skills for young people in Ressano Garcia, Mozambique. 5 March 2020. Photo: IOM