NEWTON, MA | November 21, 2011
EDC has been awarded $35 million by the U.S. Agency for International Development (USAID) to provide basic education, job training, and leadership skills for youth in the West African country of Liberia, where it is estimated that half of the population is under the age of 18.
The five-year Advancing Youth Project, part of USAID’s portfolio of youth livelihood development projects known as EQUIP3, will provide increased access to high-quality, alternative basic education services, social and leadership development, and livelihoods for out-of-school youth aged 13–35 who have marginal or no literacy and numeracy skills. EDC will also work closely with the Ministry of Education and community-based organizations to build their capacity to manage a national system and to support programs that provide youth with the knowledge and skills they need to succeed in life.
The new project builds on EDC’s implementation of the Core Education Skills for Liberian Youth (CESLY) project, which launched a new non-formal education curriculum and helped the ministry create a more effective teacher corps in Liberia.
“Liberia has one of the fastest growing youth populations in the world, and our focus will be to help the ministry and local agencies cope with some of the challenges posed by that growth, by helping them build their own capacities to provide education and job training,” said EDC Vice President Nancy Devine. “Our experience and lessons learned from implementing EQUIP programs in other countries give us a foundation for working with youth in Liberia, and we are eager to assist their government in this new project.”
Key activities include developing three levels of curriculum in literacy, numeracy, life skills, and work readiness; training facilitators to deliver alternative basic education; providing youth with work-based learning opportunities and links to entrepreneurship training; working with youth clubs and forming local alliances of youth- and work-related organizations; and developing private-public partnerships. EDC is partnering on the Advancing Youth Project with Mercy Corps and the YMCA of Liberia.
To learn more about EDC’s international programs, go to www.idd.edc.org.
Education Development Center, Inc. (EDC), is a global nonprofit organization that addresses urgent challenges in education, health, and economic development. EDC manages 350 projects in 35 countries. Visit www.edc.org.