Problem: The program fills gaps which exist in the work opportunities for Jordanian youths, such as lack of access to good education and job vacancies - even for those with the capability, motivation and ambition - and the failures of the education system, which does not prepare students for the needs of private companies.
The unemployment rate among young people in the country is 29%. To contribute to the inclusion of young people in the labor market and to promote societal development, the non-profit organization Jordan EFE, established in 2006 as an affiliate to Washington DC based Education for Employment (EFE), shapes and qualifies young people to act as professionals in local economic sectors. The organization was initially named the Jordan Career Education Foundation (JCEF), but was then rebranded as Jordan Education for Employment (JEFE).
Solutions: The project seeks to respond to the needs of young people and employers. It offers training programs of a maximum six months in duration, which include reviews of market needs, a customized curriculum and theoretical lessons combined with learning in practice and job placements.
There are three main types of program. One is employability, which teaches methods to succeed in the search for a job, labor laws, English and information and communication technology. Another type is technical training, with courses in sales, hospitality, welding, heating, ventilation and air conditioning, industrial textiles and surveying. There are also entrepreneurship programs.
Industry professionals are utilized to give students information about the skills needed to work in companies. Participants in the program are selected according to age (between 18 and 26 years) and socioeconomic status, and must also have left school and meet the requirements of employers and program partners. There are personal interviews with candidates, family members and community leaders. Upon completing the training, each youth acts for a month as an employee of one of the project partner companies. The organization endeavors to ensure everyone finds a job placement at the end of training, always with a contract, benefits, growth opportunities and a salary above the national minimum. To measure the results of its operations and to improve, the project collects and analyzes data on the employment situation of graduates and on their progression until up to one year after graduation. This enables tracking of the program’s effectiveness and its impact over time.
Outcomes: The project assures job opportunities for low-income youths, enabling economic independence and leading to a reduction in poverty and to economic progress in Jordan. It also gives dignity and self-esteem to young people and helps them act as elements of positive change in society, while the labor market benefits by hiring qualified talent. The organization aims to train 20,000 young people by 2019.