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INDIA: New skills training courses launch to help poor youth

Don Bosco Human Resource Development Center launches 3 new skills training courses


(MissionNewswire) Don Bosco Human Resource Development Center in Gagillapur, India, launched three new training courses in hospitality, tailoring and beautician skills. Similar to other Salesian skills development initiatives in the country, the center’s training programs are designed for poor and marginalized youth so they can gain skills for employment or to start their own businesses.

During an inauguration event, Father Thomas Santiago, vice provincial of the Salesian Province of Hyderabad, recalled the work of Don Bosco and the hardships he underwent in his lifetime. Fr. Santiago motivated the trainees to utilize the opportunities to their maximum advantage. Father Noel Maddhichetty, director of BoscoNet, reminded the trainees that the COVID-19 pandemic is not a hurdle in discovering their talents but presents new opportunities in the world.

“Skills training paves the way for successful employment and self-sufficiency for poor youth,” said Father Gus Baek, director of Salesians Missions, the U.S. development arm of the Salesians of Don Bosco. “When youth are able to access education in fields where employees are needed or where youth can start micro-enterprises, they are able to make a smooth transition from school to work. Salesians know the local economy and can create skills training in highly employable business sectors.”

Access to professional training and workforce development services is highly valued by youth in India. The country, which is home to 1.34 billion people (18 percent of the world’s population), will have overtaken China as the world’s most populous country by 2024, according to the World Economic Forum. While India has the world’s largest youth population, it has yet to capitalize on this, leaving some 30 percent of this population without employment, education or training.

India has the world’s fourth largest economy but more than 22 percent of the country lives in poverty. About 31 percent of the world’s multidimensionally poor children live in India, according to a report by the Oxford Poverty and Human Development Initiative.

India’s youth face a lack of educational opportunities due to issues of caste, class and gender. Almost 44 percent of the workforce is illiterate and less than 10 percent of the working-age population has completed a secondary education. In addition, many secondary school graduates do not have the knowledge and skills to compete in today’s changing job market.



Photo courtesy of Don Bosco India

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