NATION

Unemployed Youths Graduate

More than 100 unemployed youths under the Youth Employment Network (YEN) programme have graduated. The programme, a European Union (EU) project, was implemented by the University of the South Pacific
21 Nov 2014 08:02
Unemployed Youths Graduate
Graduates of the European-funded Youth Employment Network (YEN) implemented by the University of the South Pacific (USP), at Viseisei Village, Vuda. Photo: University of the South Pacific

More than 100 unemployed youths under the Youth Employment Network (YEN) programme have graduated.

The programme, a European Union (EU) project, was implemented by the University of the South Pacific (USP) and the Foundation for Rural Integrated Enterprises and Development (FRIEND).

The event was held at the Ratu Iloilo Hall in Viseisei Village, Vuda. It was witnessed by at least 1000 people. The programme aims to provide alternative employment opportunities to the children of sugarcane farmers and those who have been displaced from cane farms.

The chief guest and USP’s acting deputy vice-chancellor, Professor John Bythell, expressed his appreciation to their project partner and EU in particular, for the funding assistance.

USP has been working with FRIEND for over five years.

“USP has been able to reach deeper into marginalised and underserved communities and provide access to information, opportunities and resources to the poorest people in harder to reach areas of Fiji than we would have been able to alone,” he said.

The head of delegation of the EU in the Pacific, Andrew Jacobs, expressed his appreciation for the successful delivery of the YEN programme.

The programme included 10 weeks of training and 4-6 months of workplace attachment.

The training involved soft skills and IT skills and prepared students to take on any paid employment with ease.

USP Lautoka Campus director Dr Pramila Devi said: “It is hoped that after the trainees have secured paid employment, they would continue with their education and training as USP offers various academic and short courses to meet the diverse needs of our clients.”

The cohort was the fourth and final to graduate under this programme and the graduation ceremony was part of the ‘Grow Star Awards’ organised by FRIEND.

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