Prospects is implemented by Mercy Corps and is currently supported by the Swedish Embassy in Liberia, EXXON Mobile/NOCAL and Coca Cola Africa Foundation.
Prospects is a youth empowerment program which works with youth, businesses, government, education institutions and other service providers to support Liberian youth to be better positioned to take advantage of employment opportunities and to gain economic and social empowerment. Prospects combines direct service delivery with efforts to stimulate positive systemic changes in terms of youths’ role in the labour and job hiring markets. To date, the program has worked across the full spectrum of youth demographics in Montserrado, Grand Bassa and Bong counties. Going forward, the program is expected to expand into Nimba County.
The program involves the following intervention areas:
- A program of Employment and Entrepreneurship interventions focused on building skills and opportunities for ‘work ready’ youth through a range of products and services delivered through Mercy Corps training centers, technical and vocational training centres (TVET institutions) and others. Key activities include apprenticeships with host businesses, support to youth business through a competitive Youth Investment Fund; trainings in soft and business skills for youth; trainings in staff management for businesses; and the establishment of youth business networks so that entrepreneurs can thrive.
- New Day: A results-based grant-making initiative aiming to catalyze private sector-led innovations with potential to accelerate sustainable solutions to youth unemployment in Liberia. Complemented by targeted technical assistance to local businesses, New Day invests in companies poised to develop scalable business models to reach sustainable impact in the youth employment space and leverage additional private capital. Possible investments include:
- Information services: Info on jobs, training opportunities, employment tips, labor market info.
- Job-matching services enhancing trust and efficiency in youth recruits through vetting and recommendations.
- Innovative and catalytic tech solutions to youth unemployment.
- Mercy Corps works with a range of partnerships to deliver specialized services. Mercy Corps partners with the Ministry of Youth and Sports to implement the National Cadet Program, through which promising youth undertake placements in government ministries.
- Prospects positions itself at the forefront of research and policy on issues of youth employment through a program of research studies aimed at advancing the understanding of Mercy Corps, partners and other stakeholders, regarding key youth employment-related issues.
- An integrated psychosocial approach to youth empowerment, engaging youth aged 15-35 . This approach involves investigating how the way that youth feel and think affects social relationships and their ability to fully integrate and work with others within the community. This approach delivers life-skills training aimed to strengthen and improve relationships, participation, confidence and self-esteem to increase the chance of attaining employment and self-employment.
Click here to find out how to contact Prospects Liberia.