My Thoughts on Youth Unemployment

It seems to me that media has chosen the subject of Youth Unemployment as one of its new favorite topics. Media writes about it all the time. And so they should. Youth Unemployment is a concerning issue, a cancerous problem for society, for businesses, for the impacted families and, of course, for the young unemployed themselves.

7.5 million young people between 18 and 25 are out of a job, out of education or training. After years of schooling and potentially after more years of further education, too many young people simply cannot find a fitting job – or any job. Of surveyed employers, 61% across Europe say that they are looking to hire a young person, but the candidates lack the necessary soft skills. And that is why so many young people remain unemployed even though there are some 2 million vacancies.

Of course we know these shocking numbers. We read about them, we hear about them, we study and share youth unemployment statistics on our social media sites.

But, unfortunately, these statistics remain exactly that – statistics.

Statistics do not say anything about the personal story behind the data. Statistics probably cannot give the reader enough context to relate to an unemployed person’s individual situation. And therefore I wonder if statistics can generate an emotional reaction strong enough to get the reader to decide to help and take concrete action. Worse still, the problem of Youth Unemployed is so complex and requires that many different parties work together to be successful. So even if the reader wants to help, he or she might feel unsure exactly where to start.

The European Youth Employment (eYe) Program of CircularSociety has chosen a pragmatic approach to solving the problem of Youth Unemployment:

We connect employers and the pool of potential talent. Relying on various organizations, associations and academic institutes in our Impact Community we help individual unemployed people to develop the competencies required to be successful on the job market. Starting with employers’ hiring needs, we source candidates and select participants into the eYe-Certificate Program. During 6 months we offer formal professional, language and social skills training, facilitate finding an internship, offer individual and small group coaching.

Employers get easy access to the eYe-participants throughout the program.

Our eYe – pilot has been launched in Portugal, because this country is one of the hardest hit by the problem of youth unemployment.

On September 29, 2015, at the YMCA in the city of Setúbal we will begin the first training Module for 30 young currently unemployed Portuguese participants. Our site will give regular updates on where we are in this initiative.

To support this effort financially, we will be launching a crowd funding campaign on at the end of August.

The money we will collect during the crowdfunding campaign will exclusively be used to accommodate, feed, train and assist the participants in getting a meaningful job.

Each 5 Euro donation will pay for the equivalent of 1 hour of the eYe-Program for 1 participant.

Making an impact and helping young unemployed people attain a job has never been easier, more direct and personal.

I will keep you updated on our process.

Written by Carsten Sudhoff

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