In the world of work, they are considered as ‘at risk,’ or young Filipinos who have the least access to productive work, and who take around two to four years to find their first regular job.
However, with their immersion to the three-phase full-cycle employment facilitation services of the JobStart program, they have found jobs that will assure them of a better future.
These are the 584 JobStart graduates who are now in wage employment after completing their life skills and technical training and were either absorbed by their employer or found jobs from other employers.
They will be recognized today by the Department of Labor and Employment (DOLE), together with the Asian Development Bank (ADB) and the Government of Canada, during their graduation ceremony to be held at the University of the Philippines-Bahay ng Alumni.
The participating JobStart employers, as well as Public Employment Service Offices (PESOs), will also be recognized in the graduation ceremony.
JobStart is a partnership program of the DOLE, ADB, and the Canadian International Development Agency (CIDA), which aims to increase the employability of the youth by providing them access to technical and life skills training demanded by employers and by mentoring and tooling them to improve their job search.
Through JobStart, youth-at risk aged 18-24 years, who are either currently not working, or have less than a year of work experience, not enrolled in an educational or training program, or who have at least reached a high school education, can access technical and like skills training and on-the-job opportunities that will improve their chances in the world of work.
The graduates are part of the rollout implementation of JobStart Philippines Program which was piloted in seven local government units in the country—Caloocan; Mandaluyong; Pasay; Quezon City; Taguig; San Fernando, Pampanga; and Gen. Trias, Cavite.
San Fernando, Pampanga recorded the highest number of employed JobStart graduates at 98, followed by Mandaluyong, 96; Quezon City, 92; Caloocan, 90; Taguig, 88; Gen. Trias, Cavite, 65; and Pasay, 55.
During the graduation ceremony, DOLE Assistant Secretary Alex V. Avila will deliver the welcome address, to be followed by inspirational messages from ADB Country Director Richard Bolt and Ambassador John Holmes of the Embassy of Canada in Manila.
DOLE Undersecretary Joel B. Maglunsod, in behalf of Labor Secretary Silvestre H. Bello III, is set to deliver the keynote message.
Bureau of Local Employment (BLE) Director Dominique Rubia-Tutay, together with the local chief executives and PESO managers of the seven participating local government units, will lead the distribution of certificates of completion and participation to the JobStart trainees.
Special awards will also be given to the outstanding JobStart trainees, the PESOs with highest placement rate, and the employers who absorbed for employment the most number of trainees and those who provided 100 percent of minimum wage during the internship phase.
Under JobStart, the youth beneficiaries shall receive full-cycle employment facilitation services that include (1) Career Guidance and Coaching, to be provided by PESO staff and other trained career guidance coaches and advocates; (2) Life Skills training for 10 days; (3) Technical skills training for up to three months; and (4) Company-based internships for up to six months.
The nationwide implementation of JobStart is now institutionalized through Republic Act No. 10869.