SMU, Bargad, Oxfam sign MOU to impart technical skills to youngsters



LAHORE: An MOU signing ceremony took place between the chief minister’s Special Monitoring Unit (SMU), Bargad and Oxfam at a local hotel here on Tuesday to impart soft and market-led technical skills to young women and men.

According to details, these technical skills will be delivered via a HUB model. The HUB model, also called the ‘Innovation HUB’, is a pilot led by Bargad in district Layyah. The HUB aims to train 1,270 youth aged between 15-24 years, belonging to different literacy tiers.

Out of the total 1,270 trainees, 70 will be selected to become master trainers, 22 trainees will be given entrepreneurship opportunities by linking them with Micro-Finance Institutions (MFIs) and mentors while 200 trainees will be given job opportunities by using linkages with private and public sector enterprises. Furthermore, 200 trainees will also be given kick starter packages for agriculture-related activities, and the remaining individuals will be given skills training in different fields as per their interest, such as farming, livestock, entrepreneurship and computer skills.

Punjab Minister for Sports and Youth Affairs Jahangir Khanzada shed light on the importance of the partnership explaining, “The signing of MOU marks a definitive step towards an empowered society, one where men and women alike are equipped with relevant skills to become self-sufficient, as is the vision of the chief minister and the mandate of this government.”

Speaking at the ceremony, Bargad Executive Director Sabiha Shaheen said, “The signing of today’s MoU is indicative of the importance placed on the rural youth of Layyah by chief minister’s SMU and Punjab government. This will serve as a landmark agreement in improving the lives of rural youth in Layyah.”

“With the aim to empower the youth of Punjab by imparting essential technical skills, the SMU will use the HUB model as a pilot case study through which we aim to create effective policies for the further improvement of the technical education sector,” said SMU Head Fatima Zaidi.

Under the MOU, an Innovation HUB will be inaugurated in Layyah by the end of this month.