There are 541 million young workers (aged between 15 and 24) in the world today, accounting for over 15% of the global labour force. However, millions of youths do not complete their secondary education and lack access to decent job opportunities as many companies are reluctant to hire workers who are above the legal working age but younger than 18. This forces many young workers into informal sectors where there is no transparency, exposing them to high risk of abuse, forced labour and trafficking (86.3% of youth in Asia-Pacific are in informal employment).
The Centre’s young worker services focus on creating decent work for young workers and supporting young people to achieve their full potential, thus contributing towards UN SDG 8 on Decent Work and Economic Growth.
Our Training for Young Workers and Managers reduces risks related to young worker management, while our Youth Development Programme connects out-of-work youth looking for decent work and offers training and support to factories enabling them to cultivate a motivated, young workforce.
Through this project, I think not only young workers got the opportunity to improve, but the company and our staffs who are involved in implementing or monitoring the project also learn and grow along the way.－An HR Manager whose factory took part in a youth development programme in Indonesia between 2019-2020
Through the young worker training series, quite a few young workers who were really shy could interact with each other very well. We established a WeChat group for the participating young workers at the start of the programme for the mere purpose of convenient communication during the programme implementation, but it turned out to be very good platform for them to socialise. In this group, they arrange meet-ups after work, or pour out their emotions when feeling anxious or stressed.－Ms. Yu, the key person for VF WeCare implementation at KVE factory in China
Some young workers told me that they never thought about their career development path in our factory before, but now they have a clearer direction for their future after attending the young worker training. They also took the initiative to participate in various training and activities that we organised. I fully agree and support the idea of listening to young workers through face-to-face communication. They have expectations and we also expect a lot from them. In the future, we will continue to create opportunities to help young workers improve and develop－Mr. Wang, Chairman of the labour union at KVE factory, 2020
The project carried out by The Centre in our company has yielded good results and we are very satisfied with your company's help. Through The Centre’s professional training, we have broadened the thinking of young employees and inspired their positive spirit.－Vice President, Mr. Zhang, whose factory in China took part in a young worker support programme in 2019 and 2020
I want to become a supervisor one day in this factory. Therefore, I plan to stay with the factory and continue to learn new skills to prepare better for my career path.－A male young worker at Scansia in Vietnam who took part in a youth development programme in 2020
I attended the young worker development programme in September, which made me rethink my future development. I chose a job close to home this year because of COVID-19. I found that there are also learning and development opportunities here after I joined KVE. I also applied to participate in job skill training outside my current position. My plan is to learn the skill set of the entire production line to see if I have the opportunity to work in technical positions or as a manager in the future.－Mr. Wei, a young worker at KVE factory in Sichuan, China, 2020
After a period of training, young workers are now proving good productivity. They are young and energetic, and quick learning, especially when working with data, computers and languages, and we saw that they were happy working on these jobs.－An HR manager in Vietnam whose factory took part in a youth development programme in 2019
We started our juvenile worker recruitment programme in 2018 but besides the policy, we did not know how to turn it into actions and how to correctly recruit, develop and support juvenile workers. Now we are running a systematic way of supporting a young worker workforce at our factory.－Ngoc Son Hafuco’s HR Manager, Vietnam, 2020.
The training has taught me a practical lesson in how to communicate and handle workers’ emotions. Before the training, I always talked to the workers in the wrong tone, I think it is because I didn’t receive much education and I have poor language skills. After the training, I realised I need to explain things more clearly to the workers, learn their needs and communicate with them in a way that is suitable for them.－A deputy line manager in a Shenzhen factory