ITC and BTI team up to empower Gaza youth with digital skills (en)
(Palestine-Geneva) The International Trade Centre (ITC) and the Business and Technology Incubator (BTI) have announced a new project to connect refugees and young people in the Gaza Strip in the State of Palestine to market opportunities.
Funded by the Government of Japan, the ‘Enhance Employment of Refugees and Young Population in Gaza in IT & ITES sector’ project will provide training for 100 youngsters in the Gaza Strip in the use of digital tools and channels to grow their businesses, and connect with new clients and reach new markets.
As part of the project, the selected youth participants will participate in a four-month vocational training course on digital marketing, front-end and web development, and on how to manage their personal online presence. The participants will be guided on how to register for digital platforms, boost their activities on online marketplaces, and manage online transactions and sales. In addition to building skills, the project will seek to generate sustainable sources of income for participants by providing on-line coaching and one-on-one mentoring.
Through its focus on ecommerce and digital training, the project will help create employment opportunities that do not rely on moving goods across borders, a major issue faced by most Palestinian producers of physical items. Bridging the gap between humanitarian and development assistance the project also aims to contribute to more inclusive growth in the Gaza Strip and have a positive spillover effect on fostering peace and stability.
‘This new approach will support youth in Gaza to become more economically independent by equipping them with the technical and soft skills needed to take up jobs in the digital marketplace,’ said ITC project manager Eman Beseiso. ‘This approach can be replicated and expanded to cover areas too, including accounting, human resources and translation services, to help more graduates to find on-line jobs.’
The project will strengthen the capacity of BTI, a Palestine-based incubator, to provide high quality, relevant and sustainable digital skills to their constituencies. The BTI will have a key role in providing youth with targeted training and advisory services as well as facilitating their link to new clients and reach markets.
‘The project aims to train and qualify a group of graduates from both genders and will cover all universities and governorates in Gaza,’ Said Mr. Basel Qandeel, Director of BTI. ‘The initial phase will train 100 graduates. The success of this phase will prompt a second phase that will target larger number of graduates and wider fields.’
By providing online training for young people, the project aims to contribute to the creation of a more vibrant Palestinian economy, ensuring more inclusive and sustainable social and economic development, and creating new jobs. Currently, unemployment in the Gaza Strip stands at 40%, whereas among young people this is estimated to be around 60%.