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Rising unemployment, in particular among
youth, with figures up to 50% in the Gaza Strip, is a major cause of poverty. Many young people, even with a degree, cannot find a job. At the same
time employers complain that they cannot find the people with the right
competences to work in their companies. Youngsters with technical skills are in
high demand in Palestine. Technical and Vocational Education and Training
(TVET) should therefore be the best choice to find a job. In reality most young
people opt for the traditional academic stream, often having difficulties
finding a job after graduation, notwithstanding excellent school results.
To tackle this paradox and to reduce unemployment in Palestine, the Belgian Development Agency and Islamic Relief Palestine have now, in cooperation with the Ministry of Education, organised the first TVET summer camps ever in the Gaza Strip, with the aim of making TVET education more popular.
The TVET summer camps take place in three different TVET institutions in the Gaza Strip. They aim to change the negative attitudes towards TVET and increase the enrolment percentage at TVET centres and schools. The idea is to give the students enrolled in general education a chance to be introduced to the TVET education system.
In total, 210 students from tenth grade participate in the summer camps. At every institution they are divided in 4 separate groups of 17 students each. During 6 days they attend 3 different, interactive TVET workshops, interspersed with sports and art. Thanks to the TVET workshops, the participants can practice different occupations as the TVET workshops tries to simulate a real working environment.
Thanks to the summer school, the students gain some basic technical competences that enable them to make a more thought through study choice.
"The camp gave me the opportunity to learn more about graphic design and I was able to produce nice products using the Photoshop program.” Kareema (participant at Gaza Girls TVET School)
The summer camps also include trips to companies, factories and workshops related to the subjects practiced by the students, which gives them the opportunity to interact with the employers and learn more about the different occupations.
The products that were produced during the summer camps by the students have been presented in a central exhibition during the closing ceremony of the TVET camps held on the 31st of July 2016.
The camps also include interactive sessions between the students and their parents in order to change the attitude of parents towards TVET so they would support the choice of their children in case they want to enrol in the TVET education system.
Kamal (parent): "My son participated in the camps, he joined Deir Al Balah Industrial School, then he decided to select TVET to be his career and he registered in the school”.
The Ministry of Education will be asked to conduct a tracer study at the end of next school year to identify the percentage of participants in the summer school that have decided to enrol in TVET.