Youth Development Program
FRIEND works with young people through various programs & activities.
Goal Setting Workshops — Groups are taken through various sessions by our trained facilitators to assist young people in goal setting. Participants are encouraged to explore their dream, values and attitudes together with beliefs and barriers that may be holding them back. They are encouraged to take volunteer opportunities to gain experience or are upskilled as per the youth requests in office skills (YEN), or other Income earning Opportunities.
Youth Employment Network (YEN) – Unemployed youths are upskilled in soft skills and have opportunity to work alongside a workplace mentor for valuable work experience.
YEN was initiated in 2006 and won the CIVICUS Nelson Mandela Graca Marchel award in 2007.
The program was started in response to youth grievances that they face difficulty in accessing job market.
Upon research it was found that work force wanted employees who would go that extra mile, were multi skilled and had the additional soft skills. A program was developed initially for two weeks training and 3 months work attachment. It was found that year later atleast 80% of youths remained in employment.
The program ran twice a year until FRIEND was able to secure a grant from the European Union in 2011 and developed a program in partnership with the University of the South Pacific Lautoka Campus. These youths are trained by USP in IT skills and FRIEND provided soft skills training ensuring youths had 20 hours of volunteer work and 3 months of formal work experience before graduation. 200 youths have been trained to enter work force since 2012.