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615 young people graduate from UNDP employment project

By Raed Omari - Sep 23,2014 - Last updated at Sep 23,2014

AMMAN — More than 600 young men and women have benefited from the Japan-funded UNDP empowerment project for youths in Arab countries undergoing transition.

In partnership with the embassy of Japan, the UNDP held a graduation ceremony on Tuesday for the 615 beneficiaries of the “Youth Employment Generation Programme in Arab Transition Countries Phase II”.

Launched in 2013, the programme entailed training courses designed to hone the skills of young people from Ajloun, Jerash, Balqa, Tafileh, Maan and Karak governorates to enable them to find jobs.

According to the UNDP, the training courses covered several fields, including cooling and air conditioning, cosmetic science and hospitality.

A total of 48 projects were financed under the project in the six governorates, the UNDP said.

The Japanese embassy said in a statement that the government of Japan has extended $2 million for the project, to boost and provide employability skills and internship programmes within the private sector and other national entities, for unemployed young Jordanians.

During the ceremony, UNDP Country Director Zena Ali Ahmad said 120 young people received training on “life skills”, including community expectations and involvement, and good citizenship, while 190 others were enrolled in vocational training for certain professions needed in the local market.

She also said that 300 youths were trained on how to launch start-ups, with 120 of them competing for the best project idea. 

“Under the programme, we will continue extending technical support and consultation to ensure sustainability and success for these projects,” Ahmad added. 

Japan this year has extended support worth approximately $160 million to Jordan. It has also extended about $19 million to UN and international organisations in the Kingdom for the projects related to the Syrian crisis, the embassy statement said. 

“I sincerely hope that this project — which aims at job creation through internships, vocational training, and developing businesses based on entrepreneurship of SMEs [small and medium enterprises] — will ultimately contribute to the economic and social stability of Jordan,” the statement quoted Norimasa Yoshida, first secretary and head of economic division at the Japanese embassy, as saying during the ceremony.

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