Samoa One-UN Youth Employment Programme concludes
The Samoa One-UN Youth Employment Programme, dedicated to promoting youth employment in Samoa, concluded on Thursday with a ceremony for 20 of its graduates.
The internship training involves an eight-week training that is intended to prepare young people before entering into the workforce.
The graduation aligned with International Youth Day celebrations designed to raise awareness of the need to ensure young people's participation in the economy at a time when youth unemployment crises are being felt worldover.
The Assistant C.E.O. of the Finance Ministry's Economic Division, Misa Siaituvao Talataina, said that there has been progress in reducing the 62 per cent rate of unemployment in Samoa to a limited extent in the last five years.
He added that the Samoa One-UN Internship Program included the partnership of a range of companies and organisations.
"Samoa’s efforts to assist its unemployed young youth, the Samoan One-UN Internship Program was developed with the tremendous support of [United Nations Development Programme], the Chamber of Commerce, Samoa Association of Manufacturers and Exports, Ah Liki Investments, Savaii Koko and Business of Salafai Associations," he said
"As a result of this partnership, out of the 211 youth that graduated in the last three years, 160 youth have secured employment."
The programme this year started out with 74 individuals, 50 of whom completed and graduated from the training. Some 20 graduates are from Upolu and 30 from Savai'i.
"Twenty-four youth have secured permanent employment with Ah Liki Investments, Savai'i Koko and Business of Salafai Association," Misa added.
"We believe that more [employment opportunities] will be added from Samoa Chamber of Commerce and S.A.M.E [Samoa Association of Manufacturers and Exporters]."
Taupau Tu'umatavai Mulipola, a representative of the U.N.D.P. Office in Apia, emphasised the importance of the Internship Program as an opportunity for young people to get experience and be exposed to real world and work environments to learn what it means to be an employee.
"[This extends to] value, ethics and overall behaviour; are all the aspects that are important to being an employee," Taupau added.
"It is also the opportunity to build your personal character, and professional skills and attitude and these qualities will open many doors to secure any form of employment."
He challenged the youth who graduated to use the knowledge, skills and experience they acquired through the programme, to go forth and seek new opportunities and to build up their future potential.
Another internship graduation was held in Savai'i at the Ministry of Women, Community and Social Development Conference Room in Salelologa.