Youth employability

Photographer: Jens Honoré

Young people all over the world are facing challenges when trying to find work and transition to independence. SOS Children's Villages supports young people to help them prepare for the labour market and increase their employment prospects.

Decent work and economic growth is a Sustainable Development Goal. However, 71 million young people worldwide are unemployed. Those without parental care or coming from families at risk of breakdown have an even harder time finding a job.

Poor education, together with a lack of social support networks, parental encouragement and career guidance are some of the reasons for historically poorer employment prospects of young people living in alternative care.

An assessment in six SOS Children’s Villages programmes in Sub-Saharan Africa and one in Asia revealed the difficulties experienced by young people leaving alternative care to find jobs. Their education often fails to meet labour market demands, they lack experience, and don’t have the personal contacts to get a foot in the door of formal employment.

Find out more in: Learning and Education for Development

Empowering young people

We support young people on their way to employment and independence through a special focus on youth empowerment:

Career orientation and coaching

Strengthening vocational and entrepreneurial skills

Promoting access to work experience and in-house training

Innovation through information technology

Partnering for youth employability

In 2016, together with our partners, we launched YouthCan!, the global partnership for youth employability. The aim of this initiative is to support disadvantaged young people to help them successfully manage the transition to independent adulthood.

YouthCan! is currently being piloted in ten countries, offering a range of activities for young people to help them prepare for the job market.

Find out more about YouthCan!