In the year 2019, it was recorded that about 267 million youths were considered to be Not in Employment, Education or Training (NEET), the number which increased from 259 million in the year 2016. These figures are clearly showing the significance of World Youth Skills Day, a day established by the United Nations General Assembly to enable young people to display skills that can lead to employment and entrepreneurship.
The alarming rates of increase in the number of young people who are unemployed and also lack the necessary training are of huge concern and pose a great threat to both developed and developing nations alike. Due to the outbreak of the Covid19 pandemic, at least 1 in every 6 young people is out of work; the lockdown in most societies as a result of the pandemic has also led to the closures of centres for training and schools where young people are trained for skills development.
The closure of Technical and Vocational Education and Training (TVET) institutions during the long period of lockdown in most countries remains a threat to the continuance of skills development for young people and hinders the international target to reduce NEET rate in the year 2020. UNESCO and the ILO record that the most common and viable way of skill acquisition during the era of covid19 and therefore young people are expected to use their skills to contribute to the recovery process in their respective societies. However, they require skills to manage new challenges and adjust to interference in the future.
Peace and Conflict Resolution Resource Centre (PEACrEc) celebrates on this World Youth Skills Day, Young people who have despite the odds displayed amazing skills to make our world a better place for all. We use this opportunity to appeal to governments and necessary stakeholders to establish more Technical and Vocational Education and Training (TVET) institutions where young people can learn new skills and to also create an enabling environment that rewards the hard work of youths because we believe that a secure and peaceful society will only be attainable when young people are gainfully engaged.