Labor and Employment Secretary Rosalinda Dimapilis-Baldoz yesterday called on business leaders to help in addressing youth unemployment by participating in JobStart Philippines Program.
“JobStart aims to equip young people with relevant technical and life skills ahead of their entry in the labor market,” Baldoz had said during the 1st Session of the 2015 DOLE Kapihan and Balitaan, at the Midas Hotel, Pasay City.
“We have heard JobStart youth beneficiaries talk about how the program has improved their self-confidence and readiness for their desired jobs, but this program is also about employers getting the right people,” she added.
“Once you prepare young people for the requirements of the local labor market, you are also addressing employment mismatch.”
According to Director Dominique Tutay of the DOLE’s Bureau of Local Employment, the advantage for participating employers is that they will enjoy a reduced cost of internship, as they will pay the interns only 75 percent of the minimum wage.
“Employers who will participate in the program will receive P9,000 training fee per intern as administrative support. They will also have the opportunity to demonstrate corporate social responsibility in the communities where they operate,” Tutay said.
The second wave of youth registration aims to enlist 900 youths in the program who will undergo career guidance and employment coaching (CGEC), 300 of whom will proceed to life skills training, technical training, and internship.
For registrations and enhanced career guidance, the target numbers are: 150 applicants each for General Trias, Cavite, and City of San Fernando, Pampanga; and 300 applicants each for Taguig City and Quezon City.
As for the life skills training and internship component of the program, the  target numbers are: 50 applicants each for General Trias, Cavite, and City of San Fernando, Pampanga; and 100 applicants each for Taguig City and Quezon City.
The JobStart Program is part of the Technical Assistance Program on Employment Facilitation for Inclusive Growth (EFIG), a synergy between the DOLE, Asian Development Bank (ADB), and the Government of Canada that seeks to pave the way for necessary reforms needed to make the country’s labor market more pragmatic, responsive, and attuned to the demands of the global economy.
JobStart’s objective is to raise the job placement, to at least 80 percent from the current 60-65 percent rate, of young jobseekers, ages 18-24, who are either currently not working, or has less than a year of work experience; not enrolled in an educational or training program, or at least completed a high school education or more.
Toward this end, Baldoz shared the Philippines needs not just the support of international agency-partners, but also of local government units, especially the Public Employment Service Offices, or PESOs, to make the program an effective delivery mechanism of the government’s array of employment services.
“Convergence is what we need to solidify our efforts to contribute greatly to the realization of the Aquino III administration’s agenda of strengthening local employment services, of solving the jobs-skills mismatch, and of pushing back unemployment. Sustained commitment of our partners, both international and local, is needed so that more students and jobseekers will be educated towards making wise and excellent career decisions,” Baldoz finally said.
Interested employers may contact for more details.
END/hjtg (with reporting from Miguel Luis Arias, DOLE-BLE)


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