New EU Initiative Helps Prepare Young Georgians for the Workforce

Three new projects were formally launched yesterday under the European Union’s EU4Youth initiative. The projects aim to help young Georgians increase their employability, develop job skills, and promote their active participation in society.

Following a ribbon cutting ceremony to officially open the Eastern Partnership European School in Tbilisi, visiting European Commission Director for the Eastern Neighborhood, Mr. Lawrence Meredith, formally launched the EU4Youth program in Georgia. EU4Youth is part of a the most recent support package determined at the Eastern Partnership Summit in November 2017. It complements existing EU programs in the region, EU4Energy and EU4Businesses.

At a November 2017 summit in Brussels, the EU endorsed the Eastern Partnership “20 Deliverables for 2020,” focusing cooperation on tangible results for citizens. Amongst the key deliverables highlighted in the Summit Declaration is the new Youth and Education Package. The core of the Youth Package is the EU4Youth program (currently €20 million – the second phase is currently under preparation and will offer an additional €10 million).

The program consists of three components:

Capacity building for youth organizations, civil society organizations and/or private companies, as well as youth workers and leaders, under the Erasmus+ program;

A Grants Scheme that supports educational opportunities and employment perspectives for youth through regional grants, with particular attention to disadvantaged groups;

A coordination component aimed at fostering synergies among the program’s components, as well as among the EU4Youth and other actions targeting youth in the Eastern Partnership region, and at ensuring coherent communication and visibility for the EU4Youth program.

Before yesterday’s event, Meredith said, "The European Union's support to young people is one of the key priorities in our cooperation with Georgia and is at the heart of the Eastern Partnership. By providing young people with the necessary conditions to study, work and participate fully in society, we help them fulfil their potential and become the leaders and entrepreneurs of tomorrow."

The three new projects focus on young people from less advantaged backgrounds. Implementation, in fact, began in spring 2018 and yesterday project leaders presented their main activities and some initial results to the European delegation.

The first project, EU4Youth: Better Skills for a Better Future, is implemented by Save the Children. The project includes a comprehensive Labor Market Assessment to identify the most in-demand skills and professions, what the education sector offers, and how young people fit into the overall picture. They also plan to organize job fairs and offer small grants to help young entrepreneurs.

The second project, EU4Youth: Fostering Potential for Greater Employability, is implemented by the Danish Red Cross. It aims to establish partnerships on youth issues with Georgian government offices, and private companies. They also plan to develop an entrepreneurship mentorship program and establish a Leadership Academy.

The third project, EU4Youth: SAY YES-Skills for Jobs, is implemented by World Vision. It focuses on improving coordination with key stakeholders in the youth sector to facilitate the establishment of 23 new SKYE (Skills and Knowledge for Youth Economic Empowerment) Clubs, informal catch-up programs for recent graduates, and vocational education and training programs on agriculture and agro-tourism.


More information about the EU4Youth initiative can be found here.


By Samantha Guthrie

Source: European External Action Service

Photo: EU Neighbors

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