3,407 youths pre-selected; 1, 520 placed for life-skills training; and 462 referred for internship, JobStart Philippines off to impressive start with job-ready youth

Date Posted: February 9th, 2015 05:39 AM
 

“With JobStart, more ‘at risk’ youth will gain fast and direct access to employment.”

Labor and Employment Secretary Rosalinda Dimapilis-Baldoz sounded this message anew yesterday as she noted the impressive initial performance and impact of the JobStart Philippines Program.

“Since the program went into full swing in 2014, JobStart has continued to strengthen our country’s Public Employment Service Offices (PESOs) by enabling them to provide full-cycle employment facilitation services to clients, particularly the “at risk” youth,” Baldoz said at the first DOLE Kapihan at Balitaan news forum for 2015, held at the Midas Hotel in Pasay City.

The DOLE’s Bureau of Local Employment organises the forum, while the Labor Communications Office co-hosts it.

“At risk" youth, according to a report of BLE Director Dominique R. Tutay, are young workers who have the least access to productive work, and who take around two to four years—a long time—to find their first regular job.

Director Tutay said “first wave” of the program’s implementation has seen record numbers, with a total of 4,473 registrants 3,407 of whom have been pre-selected; 1, 520 were placed for life-skills training; and 462 were referred for internship.

These numbers are distributed in the four pilot areas of JobStart Philippines, as follows:
(a) General Trias—Of the 100 slots, there were 396 registrants, 302 of whom were pre-selected; 200 were  referred for life-skills training; and 194 were referred for internship;
(b) Taguig—Of the 240 slots, there were 1,114 registrants, 850 of whom were pre-selected; 340 were referred for life-skills training; and 276 were referred for internship;
(c) City of San Fernando—Of the 360 slots, there were 852 registrants, 852 of whom were pre-selected; 360 were referred for life-skills training; and 294 were referred for internship; and
(d) Quezon City—Of the 900 slots, there were 2,111 registrants, 1,403 of whom were pre-selected; 619 were referred for life-skills training; and 462 were referred for internship.

Secretary Baldoz said the JobStart program involves employers as partners who will have the opportunity to hire JobStart beneficiaries as interns with life skills and with employer-determined vocational training paid under the program.

The advantage for employers, Baldoz said, is that they will enjoy a reduced cost of internship, as they will pay the interns only 75 percent of the minimum wage.

Employer engagement in the JobStart Program commenced in March 2014, with visits to various industry associations and the conduct of employers’ forum in each city/municipality, followed by visits to interested establishments.

Internship vacancy solicitation resulted to relatively high returns of over 4,000 internship offers, but this eventually stabilized to around 1,200 mainly due to changed business circumstances, potential delays before receiving candidates, and issues relating to type and nature of employment.

Director Tutay said as of 5 February, 40 Memoranda of Agreement (MOAs) have been forged with employers; with additional four more MOAs which will accommodate 40 trainees in the final stages of preparation.

JobStart participating establishments are from different industries and occupations, including manufacturing (apparel and accessories, electrical components, food products, industrial gases, wood products, and cigarettes); wholesale and retail trade (machinery and equipment, office machinery); and hotel, restaurant and tourism (housekeeping, fast food services).

“We are set to go on a high gear,” Tutay reported. “From February to March this year, we will conduct the second-wave of registration for the JobStart Program.”

She said plans are being finalized for a registration of up to 900 eligible candidates, all of whom will receive the enhanced career guidance program.

“We are looking to about 300 beneficiaries who will receive life skills training and internships. With the second wave of registration, we are now looking at the possibility of extending the implementation up to December 2015,” she said.

The JobStart Program is part of the Technical Assistance Program on Employment Facilitation for Inclusive Growth (EFIG), a synergy between the DOLE, Asian Development Bank (ADB), and the Government of Canada that seeks to pave the way for necessary reforms needed to make the country’s labor market more pragmatic, responsive, and attuned to the demands of the global economy.

END/hjtg



Created Mar 11th 2015, 14:49

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