WUSC is embarking on a new initiative in Nepal that will revamp the country’s vocational-training institutions, providing youth with the skills needed for well-paying jobs to build the economy and create a more equitable and prosperous country.
Nepal is one of the poorest nations in the world and is transitioning to democracy after a decade-long civil conflict that ended in 2006. Youth in rural and urban Nepal begin working at an early age, taking whatever job they can to help provide for their families. As a result, youth do not have the time or the means to further their professional skills. Young women especially have a difficult time finding quality jobs as social and cultural norms keep them out of the workforce. Women with jobs face widespread gender discrimination.
Vocational training can help youth obtain employment in key industries such as construction, manufacturing and the service sector, but many training colleges lack resources, policy guidance and coordinated, consistent programming. WUSC has expertise in improving vocational training having previously worked in Sri Lanka, Vietnam and Afghanistan to build capacity in this sector.
WUSC and its partners will work with the local government to establish quality vocational-training informed by labour-market studies and national development needs. 36,000 youth are expected to be trained by private sector training providers. The initiative will increase employability and employment for Nepalese youth across the country, with a special focus on women and disadvantaged groups. Gender and social inclusion is a priority for this initiative. WUSC will address barriers to the participation of women through training and will support access for marginalized youth, male and female.
WUSC has been present in Nepal for several years through the volunteer placement of skilled Canadian professionals to share their expertise with partner organizations in Nepal. This is the first country-wide education and employment initiative WUSC will spearhead along with partners CECI (the Centre for International Studies and Cooperation), the Colleges and Institues Canada and the Industrial Enterprise Development Institute (IEDI). The 30 month Skills Development Project is funded by the Asian Development Bank (ADB) and the Government of Nepal.