55 Youth Certified to Enter the Labor Market
FOR IMMEDIATE RELEASE
The United States Agency for International Development (USAID), together with representatives from the Salvadoran Institute for Professional Training (INSAFORP), AFP Crecer, the Santa Ana Mayor’s Office and Walmart, awarded certificates to 55 youth who were trained to be hired at the new Walmart store that will soon open in Santa Ana.
As an essential part of the Partnership for Growth that the governments of El Salvador and the U.S. signed in November 2011, the USAID Improving Access to Employment Program is strengthening the human capital through new and improved sources of employment so as to increase the quality of life for Salvadorans.
Under the initiative "Jóvenes Comprometidos – Yo hago la diferencia" (“Committed Youth – I make the difference”), the USAID program has established strategic alliances with various companies and employment organizations. Moreover, the program has provided training to high school graduates from underserved areas to find their first job option. The program has graduated a total of 4,498 people from around the country, which has allowed them to find jobs as customer service representatives in supermarkets and restaurants, cashiers, sales representatives, interviewers and clerks, among others.
The participant youth were identified by Walmart and the program and called through an inter-agency effort in close coordination with institutions from different sectors including the Santa Ana Mayor’s Office, CRS-Fe y Alegría, the Church of Christ of Latter-day Saints, and the Regional Youth Alliance USAID-SICA. Then, selected youth participated in vocational training and subsequently received job-related training.
Out of the 55 graduates, 34 were trained in customer service in supermarkets during a 40-hour training course and have learned the skills necessary to obtain immediate employment in this industry. Another 16 received an 80-hour training course on core competencies to become cashiers for Walmart.
The graduation ceremony was presided over by the Acting Director of the USAID Economic Growth Office, Thomas McAndrews; representatives from the Santa Ana Mayor’s Office; the Sales Manager of AFP CRECER, Rafael Guerrero; a representative from INSAFORP; and the Walmart Human Resources Manager, Maricarmen Linares.
With a total investment of $7.4 million for the 2009-2013 period, USAID Improving Access to Employment Program is helping to improve labor market information available to students and other job seekers. The program also supports training and the development of skills needed to improve the country’s competitiveness in the global market.