Mercy Corps, Others Share Experiences from PROSPECTS Programs

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The Mercy Corps PROSPECTS dialogue brought together representatives from the Ministry of Youth and Sports (MOYS), Civil society organizations (CSOs), and a host of business representatives in Monrovia and its environs

— Wants capacity building for MOYS to replicate PROSPECTS apprenticeship approach

Mercy Corps Liberia, a leading global organization partnering with communities, businesses, governments, and individuals to turn crises into opportunities, has completed a two-day dialogue on youth apprenticeship placement, retention, and sustainability meant to share the experiences and lessons learned from an apprenticeship program implemented by the Promoting Sustainable Partnership for Economic Transformations (PROSPECTS).

The dialogue, held on February 5-6, 2020, in Monrovia, aimed to help participants understand the role of the Swedish Government-funded program PROSPECTS and how it is performing against its goals and lessons gained when considering the design of future programs for youth empowerment.

The dialogue, which is also expected to be replicated in Bong and Nimba Counties this week, brought together representatives from the Ministry of Youth and Sports (MOYS), Civil society organizations (CSOs), and a host of business representatives in Monrovia and its environs.

Wah S. Ajavon, Mercy Corps’ Employment and Entrepreneurship Manager, said Liberian youth face unimaginable challenges in their search for employment opportunities.

According to him, the PROSPECTS program supports young and energetic Liberians (15-35 years) to find meaningful employment opportunities to land youth to a permanent employment position or become entrepreneurs, by tapping into private-sector creativity and initiatives.

“We are here today to look at the low apprentices’ retention by the host institution and lack of budgetary allotment after PROSPECTS phase out. How do we continue with this youth empowerment program?” he asked partners.

Ajavon has also encouraged businesses that are partnering with Mercy Corps to come up with a sustainable plan to keep the legacy of PROSPECTS.

Also, speaking on the sustainability aspect from Mercy Corps position, Ajavon has sent out an appeal to the Government of Liberia to facilitate Trainer of Trainers (TOT) and, at the same time, create access to the six (6) training curricula stakeholders.

The Director of the National Cadet Program (NCP) at the MOYS, Samuel Mappy, has applauded Mercy Corps and the Swedish government for the support.

Mappy said, “Since 2013, the NCP with the support from the Swedish Government through Mercy Corps has empowered at least 479 young Liberians through the program with an estimated 281 persons being employed.”

Meanwhile PROSPECTS, which is being implemented by Mercy Corps Liberia, started in 2017, and is targeting 20,000 young people in the Country and, out of that amount, 11,000 young people in Bong, Montserrado and Nimba Counties have benefited so far.

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