[Image shared with permission from: Samoa Qualifications Authority]
One of the challenges driven by the limited capacity of the education sector in the Pacific is low skill levels and high youth unemployment. The impacts of COVID-19 have exacerbated youth unemployment issues, with young women and Person with Disabilities (PWD) affected the most. While there are potential economic impacts, there are also increased risks of social disengagement, poorer health outcomes and unsafe behaviours.
The project supports economic opportunities for youth in two ways:
- Professional Development of Technical and Vocational Education Training (TVET) / Education Providers
- Skills and Leadership Training for Youth, Young Women and PWD
Through professional development of TVET education providers, the project provides in-service training opportunities that TVET trainers can access using remote and distance learning methodologies to improve the quality of their teaching. Enhanced capacity of TVET trainers will improve quality of TVET instruction and result in increased access to high quality learning and training opportunities for youth.
As a first step, desk research and virtual consultation workshops with six TVET stakeholder groups were held to better understand TVET priorities in the Pacific. In May 2021, Skills Consulting Group from New Zealand has been selected to develop the TVET Online Toolkit which is expected to be completed by August 2021.
The project also aims to build the entrepreneurial and leadership skills of youth, particularly out-of -school youth and those that are unemployed, with a focus on young women and PWD. The project will work with local NGOs to build their capacity to leverage ODL by supporting ODFL, developing structures and strategies to deliver leadership/vocational courses.