Cooperatives to Strengthen Youth Empowerment and Employment Readiness among Vulnerable, Marginalised and At-Risk Groups

Young people in Cambodia and the Lao People's Democratic Republic face specific challenges in accessing the labour market. For those in employment, many are in poor quality and low-paid jobs. The project aims to build institutional capacities to deliver innovative and value-added services with a special focus on employment readiness/foundational skills empowerment, and cooperative development for marginalized and at-risk youth.

The project will draw on the ILO’s expertise and technical resources in this work. Key tools will include:
  • ILO’s Accelerate.COOP toolset - Think.COOP, Start.COOP and Manage.COOP - for young people to understand the specific benefits and challenges of the cooperative business model and to make an informed and conscious decision on whether a cooperative might be a suitable employment pathway; to start cooperative action based on a structured approach; and to better manage existing cooperatives, where they exist.
  • ILO’s Community-Based Enterprise Development (C-BED) family of tools, an activity-based training approach that allows youth and vulnerable groups to work together, without external experts, to consider livelihood options and strategies.
The project outputs will be:
  • Benchmark of youth employment programmes/services in particular that of cooperatives;
  • Increased awareness about and strengthened capacity of cooperatives;
  • Strengthened capacities on employment readiness and foundational skills; and
  • Strengthened networks, partnerships and youth-leadership.
For more information please contact:

Charles Bodwell, Enterprises Development Specialist, ILO Decent Work Team for East and South-East Asia and the Pacific