Syrian and Lebanese youth in TVET programme support the restoration process in Beirut
Abdullah started working in electricity to support his family at a very young age due to poverty and low and unstable income. He always felt the need to know more. When he heard about the short vocational training sessions, he was very excited to join. This is when Abdullah enrolled in the electricity training hoping for a better future.
“The training was very important, as my knowledge in the field was basic. I learnt a lot on both professional and personal levels. Two months of excessive training gave me the know-how as well as the self-confidence”, said Abdullah.
Following the Beirut Blasts that occurred on the 4th of August 2020, leaving thousands of families devastated and businesses to the ground, thirty young trainees from the TVET Programme were chosen in the fields of tiling, plumbing, electricity, and carpentry, to help in the efforts of rebuilding in Beirut. “I was very excited to support the affected small business in Beirut. This could be a major step in the lives of the affected people, as well as in mine. It is a huge experience not only professionally but for my personal growth as well”, concluded Abdullah.
With limited financial means and work opportunities Hazem, a young Syrian was searching for an opportunity to end his family struggles. He joined the electricity training, in the hope of finding a job opportunity to be able to help his father financially.
“I was forced to work at a very young age due to our difficult situation, but I always dreamt of pursuing my studies; I wanted to be more successful,” said Hazem. “The professional training was a very fruitful opportunity, and I can say I learned a lot”, he added.
“When I was informed that I would be joining the team that would go to Beirut, I was very thrilled. The demolished houses and businesses would be rebuilt, bringing hope and life to their owners, and a sense of responsibility and belonging to us, today’s youth and tomorrow’s citizens. I am so grateful I got to be part of this experience,” concluded Hazem.
All the youth agreed that they could not stand still and watch their beloved country in ruins and the vulnerable people suffering without feeling the urge to support them by any means. “We felt compelled to come to Beirut and participate in the restoration process, so we can help the Lebanese families to rise again.”
Besides enhancing their skills and putting to practice what they learned theoretically in training, this activity gave the youth the chance to explore their values and show their sense of responsibility towards others and their civic engagement in the hope of living in a better society.
The thirty trainees are from the UNESCO project “Technical and Vocational Education and Training (TVET) Program for Lebanese and Syrian Vulnerable Youth Affected by the Syrian Crisis in Lebanon”, funded by the Norwegian Ministry of Foreign Affairs, and Implemented in collaboration with Safadi Foundation. It aims at helping the underprivileged youth, both Lebanese and Syrian refugees, through providing them with necessary skills in different professions, as well as life skills, to cater to their personal and financial needs, while positively contributing to their community’s well-being.