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Burkina Faso: IOM Launches New Project to Promote Youth Employment

Photo / FAO: A worker adjusts a tractor hitch in Djibo, Burkina Faso.

The International Organization for Migration (IOM) announced, August 23, the launch of a new project in Burkina Faso to promote young people’s professional integration and entrepreneurship in order to reduce the risk of irregular migration into the country.

Burkina Faso, like other sub-Saharan African countries, is affected by an increase in migration due to unemployment and lack of opportunities to generate income that affects a young and rapidly growing population, the IOM said in in a press conference.

Young people are the most affected by the phenomenon of underemployment and unemployment because of their low level of employability (66.7% of young people have not received training) and difficulties in accessing the means of production, leading to irregular migration.

The IOM project was launched in Tenkodogo, in central-eastern Burkina Faso, in the presence of senior government officials, representatives of local authorities, youth and civil society organizations.

“Young people are full of energy and often overflow with creativity and inventiveness and our countries need innovative solutions to the increasingly complex problems they face. I am convinced that by empowering young people, we can make the most of the extraordinary human capital they represent to contribute to the development, peace and renewal of our societies, “said IOM Project Leader, Marie Stella Ndiaye. “This project we are launching today demonstrates our shared commitment to addressing the critical issue of access to youth training and employment.”

The project is financed by the Italian and Belgian governments and implemented in partnership with the Ministry of Youth, Vocational Training and Integration, NGOs and civil society organizations.

This three-year project aims to contribute to socio-economic development in Burkina Faso and to tackle irregular migration by raising awareness of the risks of irregular migration. 750 beneficiaries, including women and people with disabilities, will be identified and trained in micro-enterprise development techniques. At the end of this training, 375 of them will receive technical and financial support to start their own businesses.