The world has changed along with different social contexts. There is no exception to the current labour market, which looks for skilled workforce with dedicated fundamental competence in specific vocations. Thus, World Vision Foundation of Thailand (WVFT) has joined hands with Citi Foundation to carry out the Empowering Marginalised Youth of Bangkok for Productive Citizenship Programme, with an objective to improve development assets for vulnerable adolescents, focusing on youth mental and intellectual development and social skills through the training module called ‘Youth Ready Work’. The course prepares youth to be ready for employability or entrepreneurship in the fields of their interest and preference that are in line with the market demand.
To offer these youths an opportunity to showcase their vocational competence and preparedness to enter the actual career world, the Empowering Marginalised Youth of Bangkok for Productive Citizenship Programme has recently organised the Youth Ready Work Market Place, the 2nd Year. The opening ceremony has been joined by many honorary guests, including Ms Rosalin Kowae - Ministry Support Group Director of WVFT, Mr Tohphan Tuchinda - Head of Corporate Affairs of Citibank, Ms Wanvisa Komindr - Senior Vice President of Corporate Affairs of Citibank and Ms Thitiya Cheeranond - Corporate Affairs Manager of Citibank. The event has been held at World Vision Foundation of Thailand, Training Centre. Eighty-two adolescents who have completed Youth Ready Work course have joined the event to present their readiness to move towards employability and entrepreneurship in 10 business fields: beauty service, big bike service, mocktail, bakery, Thai food, IT service (computer repair), dressmaking, application developer, dentist assistance and nursing assistance.
“I quit school because my family has faced financial problems. I was looking for a vocational course which would get me started generating income right away, so I could provide for my mother, who is very old now. Then I heard from a friend about this programme that they would open a big bike repair course. As I’ve always loved big bikes since I was young, I decided to join this programme. I’m thankful to WVFT and Citi Foundation for such a good programme, which helps shorten my time to reach my dream,” said Chanawong Sittisarikam, aka Keng, one of the programme participants and the winner from the 2nd Year SMEs Business Plan Competition, another activity under this programme, with his business plan of ‘Speed Bike Care’, a big bike wash and maintenance service.
“I personally love sewing. Earlier I had checked the tuition fees of sewing courses offered by some dressmaking schools and found that they were quite expensive. Then I came across an application announcement for this youth vocational training programme on WVFT’s Facebook, which included a sewing course. So, I applied for the programme,” said Dokphai Sae-yang, another programme participant and the 1st runner-up from the 2nd Year SMEs Business Plan Competition, with her business plan of ‘Fix2Fit in Bangkok’, a quick clothing repair with delivery service. After recalled how she’s joined the programme, she revealed further what she’s benefited from it.
“What I’ve got from this programme, first of all, is knowing more about myself. I had done a variety of jobs before, but after joining the Youth Ready Work course, which is the training all of the participants must complete, I’ve discovered more about myself and what to do next with my life. Secondly, I’ve got a job that generates income for me and starts my future. Thirdly, I’ve gained knowledge about business management from the SMEs course. I would like to thank WVFT, Citi Foundation, and teachers from Orapin Thanarit Dress Making School, as well as others teachers who have provided me vocational skills and business knowledge. I have a dream to start a dressmaking business and have a clothing brand of my own.”
Through these 2 years of the implementation of the ‘Empowering Marginalised Youth of Bangkok for Productive Citizenship Programme’ under the support of Citi Foundation, the programme has educated and offered occupational opportunities to more than 392 vulnerable adolescents and supplied the Thai economics with 5 small and middle entrepreneurs.