Charsadda: On August 12, 2015, Provincial Facilitation Unit (PFU) established by Technology Up-gradation and Skill Development Company (TUSDEC) entered into a Memorandum of Understanding (MoU) with Al-Khidmat Foundation. Signing ceremony was held at Al-Khidmat Office Charsadda. MoU is intended to facilitate the youth trained in various vocational trades with the provision of interest free, micro-loans to embolden their spirit of self-employment. Mr. Nayyar Rehman, Programme Manager, TUSDEC and Mr. Noor Hussain President, Al-Khidmat Foundation inked the MoU.

TUSDEC is implementing a four years project of TVET (Technical Vocational Education and Training) Support to uplift the socioeconomic status of poor and marginalized communities in KP and FATA regions. MoU has been signed to further effectuate skills development endeavours of the project through the preferment of self-employment as a potential livelihood opportunity.

According to the project’s spokesperson, TUSDEC is rigorously collaborating with various micro-finance institutions in order to provide the trained individuals with the seed money to start-up their own businesses. As an effectuation of the MoU, the trained individuals will be linked up with Al-Khidmat Foundation on regular basis in order to apply for interest free micro loans under Al-Khidmat’s Mawakhat Program, which is focused at reducing the unemployment rate prevalent in the country through aiding the establishment of small enterprises.

TUSDEC Programme Manager said that due to the lack of employment opportunities in the local labour market of KP and FATA, most of the trained men and women prefer to open up their own businesses, even if they are provided with a very meagre amount of interest free loans. Establishment of small enterprises aids in escalating the job opportunities for other individuals while improving the overall standard of living in the target areas.

In the first phase of the project, more than 2000 individuals have completed their trainings while more than 2000 are currently enrolled in various courses. Out of the trained pool, more than 300 are successfully running their own businesses with a considerable improvement in their financial situations. The organization has also launched its third phase of trainings in which more than 6000 men and women from 27 districts of KP and FATA will be imparted with various demand-driven technical and vocational skills. For implementation of the third phase of trainings, TUSDEC has also engaged the local industry as its training service providers in order to deliver industry need-based trainings which would enhance the formal employment opportunities for the trainees.

TVET Support Programme is funded by the Delegation of European Union to Pakistan and is implemented by Technology Upgradation and Skill Development Company, Ministry of Industries and Production, Government of Pakistan. The four years programme is aimed at training 12000 men and women from the rural and marginalized communities of KP and FATA.