(MENAFN Press) Silatech has joined as a strategic partner to support Phase 2 of the Youth Economic Empowerment Project (YEEP), a program led by the United Nations Development Programme (UNDP) and the Government of Yemen and designed to benefit more than 8,000 Yemeni youth over two years. The USD 10.5 million YEEP II project will provide young Yemenis with employment in public works programs, leading from there to job and skills training, career guidance, entrepreneurship assistance and job placement
Ranked 160 out of 184 countries in the 2012 Human Development Index, Yemen is one of the poorest countries in the world. It has witnessed a decline in humanitarian and living conditions following the unrest that erupted in 2011. The country has one of the highest youth unemployment rates in the world, at approximately 65 percent, and more than half the population lives on less than USD 2 per day
According to Silatech Director of Microenterprise Justin Sykes, "The YEEP II program represents one of the most holistic and comprehensive youth economic empowerment strategies we have come across in the MENA region, and we are delighted to be working to shape and deliver this initiative. This partnership will enable Silatech to expand the impact of its existing Yemen-based programming, as well as test out a range of innovative solutions which will serve to increase job creation opportunities for Yemeni youth
YEEP II builds upon the success of an innovative year-long pilot program, supported by technical assistance from Silatech, which an independent evaluation found to be "highly relevant and timely in meeting the needs of a growing body of vulnerable youth in Yemen." Silatech will provide YEEP II with a substantial financial contribution, as well as technical assistance in the areas of enterprise development, access to finance, career guidance and counseling, and job matching
The Youth Economic Empowerment Project is a multi-funded project with contributions from the UNDP, SPARK and Silatech as well as the Japanese, Korean and Dutch governments. YEEP has been designed to align closely with the National Youth Employment Plan 2014-2016, which was approved by the Government of the Republic of Yemen in late 201
Since its programs in Yemen began in 2009, Silatech has created or sustained over 45,000 jobs, supported more than 30,000 young people to start and grow their own businesses, and enabled more than 40,000 youth to open their first savings accounts. Silatech is the largest provider of youth-focused microenterprise services in the Middle East and North Africa.