Celebrating World Youth Skills Day
Since 2014, World Youth Skills Day has been an opportunity to celebrate the strategic importance of equipping young people with skills for employment, decent work and entrepreneurship (United Nations). For Prince’s Trust International, this is a valuable opportunity to reflect on the work that we have collaborated with our partners on to support young people globally to build their skills across our employability, enterprise and education programmes. It is also a chance to look ahead and consider how we can continue to support the upskilling of the future generations.
Within the changing landscape of employment, we’ve seen a shift towards the need for employees to display technical skills, particularly across the green and digital economies (ILO, 2021), alongside strong core life skills (Unicef, 2019). As an organisation, we recognise that for young people to meaningfully engage in sustainable opportunities which allow them to reach their full potential economically and socially, there needs to be a strong focus on equipping them with these core skills in order for them to thrive.
Spotlight on our Africa Programmes
This year has been a particularly exciting year for our programmes across Sub Saharan Africa. Prince’s Trust International began working here in response to some of the complex challenges that young people were facing attempting to move into the job market coupled with the lack of education to prepare them for the next steps into the world of work.
All of the education, employment and enterprise programmes that are delivered by our network of local expert partners are adapted to meet the needs of the young people within their specific context, a common thread is the focus on upskilling the young people with the necessary skills for their future.
Building on from the Future of Work (2021) findings which emphasised the importance of life skills for young people, we’ve seen some exciting events taking place in Nigeria with Field of Skills and Dreams and Junior Achievement. These events have focused on bringing young people and employers together to discuss some of the key themes from the report, including the focus on the digital and green economy. Furthermore, recruitment events were organised to connect young people with employers, following the delivery of workshops to develop some core life skills, such as confidence, interview skills and CV writing.
We continue to hear examples of transformative changes to young people’s lives after taking part in our programmes. Faith, a participant of Get Into in Nigeria delivered by partner Field of Skills and Dreams, won the Prince’s Trust Global Young Achiever award. Chigozie, a participant in the first cohort of the same programme, used the skills gained to start his own solar panel business and has taken on young people from future cohorts. While we recognise that we have a way to go, we want today to be an opportunity to acknowledge and celebrate the young people that we have worked with across the world and how they have utilised their skills as building blocks to a more sustainable future, with the support of our amazing partners worldwide.