The Armenian Progressive Youth NGO has successfully organized and implemented three Employment Schools (each “school” lasted for three months within the framework of the EU COVID-19 Solidarity Programme for the Eastern Partnership announced by People in Need and financed by the European Union. The beneficiaries of this project were displaced women aged 18 to 60, young adults aged 18-30, and people with disabilities living in the Armenian regions of Yerevan, Ararat, Kotayk, and Vayots Dzor. Project participants were given the opportunity to strengthen and improve their economic independence within the framework of the project.
Employment Schools consisted of three stages. In the first stage, 140 people had the opportunity to participate in an inception training which focused on creating a CV and searching for jobs. In the second stage, pre-selected participants took part in interactive discussions and were equipped with practical exercises, non-formal educational methods, and tools. They attended training courses aimed at enhancing their employment and entrepreneurial potential. In the final stage, participants had the opportunity to receive individual coaching consultations from experienced specialists in various fields.
“During the three courses within the project, participants had the opportunity to participate in 24-topic courses on the following topics: CV and resume writing skills, the job search process, major job search websites, communication skills and feedback, employment law, types of contracts, leadership and more. In total, more than 200 hours of coaching sessions were organized for the participants. Subsequently, each participant, according to his/her preference and his/her field of activity, got the opportunity to apply for an internship or to receive a scholarship,” says Eleonora Sargsyan, one of the trainers of the project.
As a result of the three Employment Schools, a total of 25 participants have had the opportunity to do internships in various fields. The internships were aimed at developing participants’ professional abilities and skills in areas such as jewelry making, cooking, education and others.. It should also be noted that nine graduates of the project were given vocational and/or secondary professional training scholarships, thanks to which they were able to acquire new professions or develop the skills they already had.
The goal of the project was to encourage personal and professional development in vulnerable people by facilitating their entry into the labor market. “We are happy to report that the successes registered within the framework of the project are evident because immediately after finishing school, around 60% of the project participants were already able to find a job in the field of their training and recorded success in their work,” says Diana Chobanyan, the project manager.
Thanks to the cooperation of Armenian Progressive Youth, People in Need, and EU funding, 75 participants developed their professional skills and abilities, gained theoretical and practical knowledge in their field of interest, and were able to find a job and create new career development opportunities for themselves.