NEWS | Wednesday, 21 May 2008

ETC Youth employment strategy

“The Government’s target is to encourage more youths to pursue continuous education and integrate in the world of work, with the necessary skills needed by our economy. By doing so we create a sustainable economy and a sustainable social policy,” said social policy minister John Dalli during the launch of the ETC Youth Employment Strategy for 2008 and 2009.
The Youth Strategy is aimed at young people aged between 16 to 25 who are not currently in post-secondary or tertiary education. The document gives an overview of key policy documents, provides some key labour market trends in respect of young people, describes the initiatives that ETC has taken in recent years and its major outputs, and sets out those actions planned for the next two years.
ETC firmly believes in the contribution of young people to the Maltese economy and society. This is made possible through their access to decent work that provides them with dignity and the opportunity to develop into responsible and productive citizens.
ETC seeks to build upon the education that youth receive during compulsory schooling by helping them to make a successful transition into employment through training and work exposure. The Corporation aims to provide a wide range of services that are beneficial to young people in all walks of life. It pays special attention to those who may for various reasons require additional assistance; such as the unemployed, the under-employed and the discouraged young people who lose hope in their ability to find a job.
In Malta the employment rate of young people is on the higher side in Europe. The Labour Force Survey of July to September 2007 states that the employment rate for Maltese youth stood at 48.5 per cent overall with very similar rates for young men (48.8 per cent) and young women (48.1 per cent). This reflects a rise of almost three percentage points over the year before, when the rate stood at 45.8 per cent. The largest gains were among young women, whose employment rate rose by over four per cent. The considerable gap between the employment rates of men and women tend to emerge later in the working life, presumably due to work-life choices and opportunities.
ETC offers a range of schemes and services which it has sought to develop and consolidate in recent years. These place young people at the centre of the Corporation’s activities. The Corporation offers professional services in career guidance and personal action planning and profiling. It also offers several job search facilities and information on living and working in Europe. The ETC offers a number of employment schemes for youth, namely the Job Experience Scheme and the Active Youth Scheme. These schemes facilitate the school to work transition of young people by providing them with work experience in a place of work for a number of weeks. A financial allowance is given to each participant on ETC schemes.
ETC believes in increasing young people’s employability through training. It offers various courses in academic subjects, trade, technical, mechanical and IT. Apprenticeships and traineeships offer young persons the opportunity to acquire practical work experience while still studying at MCAST or ITS.
The Corporation is sensitive towards the particular needs of youth in disadvantaged situations. Several training programmes, schemes and initiatives have been introduced for illiterate or very low skilled persons, persons with disability, former substance abusers, former inmates at a correctional facility, youth living in institutional care homes, and lone parents.
In the years to come, ETC will continue to develop and improve its employment and training schemes and services to equip its young clients better in preparation to the world of employment. The Youth Employment Strategy includes various new initiatives to increase the employability and labour market integration of young people. The Strategy seeks to make the best and maximum use of EU funds available to Malta. The initiatives to be introduces in these two years are mapped out in this Strategy.


21 May 2008

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