By Roche M Angon, National Project Coordinator for ILO
MDG Fund Joint Programme on Alternatives to Migration: Decent Work for Filipino Youth
Young people from Maguindanao often leave their hometown to work in Manila, urban areas, or overseas due to limited opportunities. Maguindanao, a province in South Central Mindanao was the 6th poorest province in the Philippines in 2011 based on findings of the National Statistical Coordination Board. The unemployment rate of youth belonging to 20-24 year age bracket was estimated at 65 per cent, higher than the national average. The youth in the 15-24 year age bracket accounts for 18.76 per cent of the total population which is lower than national level at 20 per cent.
As reported by the ILO-commissioned study “Assessment of Entrepreneurship Potentials of Disadvantaged Youth in Maguindanao”, most youth respondents wanted to start their own microenterprises in the province if entrepreneurship assistance will be extended to them. They added that owning a microenterprise will provide them independence from employers apart from generating income.
In response, the International Labour Organization and the Technical Skills and Development Authority of the Autonomous Region in Muslim Mindanao have partnered under the Millennium Development Goal Fund (MDG F) Joint Programme on Alternatives to Migration: Decent Work for Filipino Youth funded by the Government of Spain. Through the partnership, labour market-responsive entrepreneurship skills training are being implemented, using the ILO’s Start and Improve Your Business (SIYB).
Maguindanao was the first province to complete the delivery of entrepreneurship training to 113 out of 100 target disadvantaged young women and men. Disadvantaged youth trainees, who mostly reached high school level, include persons with disability and recipients of educational subsidy of International Organization for Migration under the MDG F Joint Programme.
TESDA-ARMM initially distributed starter kits to youth with feasible plans to run individual or group-based enterprises. It now focused on providing post training services in collaboration with local business service providers, private sector and relevant government agencies. Local SIYB trainers are also extending mentoring and coaching support to the youth.