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Youth Employability and Skills global events

July – August 2019 

Throughout July and August this year, we brought hundreds of ICS volunteers together across Africa, Asia and the UK to celebrate International Youth Day, engaging and empowering ICS youth to be active citizens on topics which are important to them. 

For 2019 we focused on youth employability. Globally, youth unemployment is a significant problem; young people are almost three times more likely to be unemployed than adults. With a network of 37,000 ICS youth who bring creativity, adaptability and resilience, we want to provide a platform for young people to discuss the issue of youth unemployment, network with like-minded young people, and develop their skills.  

Here's what happened in our ICS countries across the world:


Zambia – VSO – 15 - 31 July

‘Empower Youth for Employment and Entrepreneurship’

VSO Zambia built on the Youth Entrepreneurship Programme (YEP) piloted last year by holding a series of workshops across five districts for 60 young people. The activity aimed to develop the entrepreneurial potential of Zambian youth through business skills training, as a way of creating alternatives to formal employment and encouraging self-dependency. Local organisations, institutions and companies attended to offer internships and mentoring schemes to Zambian youth. These activities provided a platform for young people who have been on the ICS and YEP placements to network and share their knowledge and skills.  


Tanzania – Raleigh International (Raleigh Tanzania Society) – 9 and 10 August

The Raleigh Tanzania Society, formed of ICS alumni, delivered a two-day youth employability workshop. Sessions focused on teaching young people skills to help with employment and entrepreneurship, such as interviewing skills, how to prepare a CV and public speaking. Day 2 focused on supporting young people with small business start-ups and sources of funding.

Kenya – VSO – 10 August

Five ICS alumni from VSO and Balloon Ventures, along with VSO Kenya staff, organiseda one-day youth employability and skills workshop to provide ICS alumni and young people in Nairobi with an opportunity to discuss issues of youth unemployment, explore different types of employment opportunity and learn how to market their ICS experiences as transferable skills to employers.

The full-day event brought together potential employers, recruiters, the business community and successful young entrepreneurs to share key tips and empower young people to access the employment opportunities available to them.

UK – VSO – 10 August

A dedicated team of seven ICS alumni organised a one-day youth employability and skills event in London. The event focused on professional development and networking, offering the opportunity to hear from inspiring speakers and take part in skills development workshops, careers advice sessions and discussions on youth employability. 

    Tanzania – VSO – 12 August

    In Tanzania, VSO staff and ICS volunteers worked with the community to raise awareness and change negative perceptions towards students and young people who are taking vocational training, as a solution to high youth unemployment levels. VSO’s event offered skills workshops on career planning, goal setting and personal resilience to encourage young people to undertake vocational and entrepreneurship training as alternative employment routes. The day was also an opportunity for young people to hear from local vocational training colleges.

    Bangladesh – VSO – 22 August

    VSO Bangladesh held a series of youth employability and skills activities on International Youth Day, involving local employers, young people and government representatives.  Activities included:

    • a youth resources conference, where employers and young people came together to talk about the opportunities and funding available in the local area; 
    • a youth roundtable discussion, exploring youth employability in Bangladesh; 
    • a job fair, providing a networking opportunity for young people and potential employers.

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    Funded by the UK Government.

    ICS is funded by the UK's Foreign, Commonwealth and Development Office (FCDO), which projects the UK as a force for good in the world, including reducing poverty and tackling global challenges.

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