EDC’s livelihood development programs begin with the needs of youth. In many countries, the number of youth is increasing at a faster rate than the number of new jobs. In response, EDC supplements workforce development strategies with livelihood programs for young people from marginalized backgrounds. Our projects cater to young people’s specific needs, build upon their existing knowledge and experience, and help them progress to employment in the informal or formal economy, or to entrepreneurship.
Flexible “learning while earning” programming allows young people to complete school, earn an equivalency certificate, or develop specific technical skills and cultivate cross-cutting work readiness skills, while continuing in part-time or full-time work. Some of EDC’s youth livelihoods projects train youth to develop their own microenterprises, offering young people another way to improve their possibilities for earning a living. Our livelihood development programs help improve the short-term well-being of youth while helping them accumulate key human and financial resources.