concern with youth employment crisis is at the center of The Reaching Priority Populations with HIV Project interventions by promoting the empowerment of families of orphans and vulnerable children affected by HIV / AIDS
May 1, 2018 — According to the Ministry of Youth Employment, more than 79% of the Ivorian population is under 35 years of age, 53.4% are unemployed, and most of them are women. People between the ages of 14 to 35 make up nearly 3/4 of the unemployed population and nearly 52% are poorly educated at the primary school level. Faced with this situation, the Ivorian Government has adopted concrete measures, including the adoption of strategic frameworks for job creation such as a national employment policy, and an employment recovery strategy, but above all the creation of a Ministry exclusively dedicated to the issue of the Promotion of Youth and Youth Employment. Even if the majority of the unemployed youth live in Abidjan, other cities face the same problem.
The Reaching Priority Populations with HIV Project (RPP-HIV Project) includes this concern at the center of its interventions by promoting the empowerment of families of orphans and vulnerable children affected by HIV / AIDS in Ivory Coast.
"I got a higher technician diploma in production and sales. I also did more than four job interviews, without success," says expressed Koffi Marius, speaking for several young people from OVC families. "As soon as my mother informed me of this training that the RPP-HIV Project organizes in techniques for Job Search, I canceled all my activities to participate. I am convinced that with the advice I just received, my next interview for a job will be a success!”
Having a job is a step on the real path to empowerment and individual and family dignity.
Since 2017, Jhpiego has received funding from CDC PEPFAR for the implementation of the RPP-HIV Project, in partnership with AVSI in the localities of Daloa, Gagnoa, Oume, Daloa, Issia, Bouafle, Sinfra and Mankono. The goal of the RPP-HIV project is to improve the health status of Priority Populations in targeted districts, through increased access to quality services in the areas of prevention, screening, care and support. Thus, AVSI in Ivory Coast is in charge of implementing the quality care and support component for orphans and vulnerable children (OVC) because of HIV / AIDS and their families.
One of the priority areas of the intervention implemented by AVSI concerns the economic reinforcement of families, through income-generating activities, setting up savings and credit groups, but especially the organization of trainings that promote the economic inclusion of OVC families. It is in this perspective that the project has identified training in Entrepreneurship and Job Search Techniques, as priority activities to contribute to strengthening the economic power of families with a long-term vision.
In an institutional approach, RPP-HIV, through AVSI, and the Youth Employment Agency of Daloa and Gagnoa decided to pool their efforts and resources to contribute to the operationalization of government policy in the promotion of employment. These training programs are an opportunity to integrate family members of OVC.
"Before I had plenty of ideas, I wanted to buy bananas in the villages, then sell them in town. For a long time, I did not know at all how to launch this business, and how to organize myself to make it a reality. God listened to my prayers and now the project gives me this chance, says Mrs. Fatoumata Ouattara, mother of 4 children and beneficiary of the project.
350 youth and adults from OVC families participated in the training sessions organized in 7 stages in all the project-targeted districts. These beneficiaries are now integrating the database of the Regional Directorates for Youth Employment on the sites of the RPP-HIV Project, through a plan of monitoring and supervision of proximity. In view of this innovative experience, the project wants to include this type of activity in its future agenda in order to contribute to the graduation of families with effective plans of action.