Balochistan is the poorest province in Pakistan, and more than half of its population lives in extreme poverty. Economic growth has been stunted by limited investment in training and education programmes. With an overall literacy rate of 49.8%—and a female literacy rate of only 26.2%—communities there lack even the basic education necessary to take advantage of what limited employment opportunities exist.
40% of people over 10 years old work; only 9% of women do.
It is particularly difficult for those living in rural areas, such as Ziarat, Loralai, and Harnai Districts, as most of the province’s current TVET programmes are offered in urban areas. Women and girls face even more challenges, given the social and cultural restrictions on female mobility outside the home.
Employers are going elsewhere to fill higher paying jobs.
Across Ziarat, Loralai, and Harnai Districts, the majority of families rely on agriculture and livestock, but even here locals don’t have the skills and education to take the higher paid jobs in pest control or livestock management. Similarly, local industries in coal and marble mining, auto and electric repair, and tailoring/shoemaking, among other trades, do exist, providing a potential source of jobs and income; yet, most people are unable to get these jobs without formal training. With so few trained, skilled workers in the Districts of Ziarat, Loralai, and Harnai, local businesses often bring in skilled labourers from other cities.
Many women also wish to start home businesses in processing food, embroidering, or stitching. Yet, to produce quality goods that can be sold in local markets, they require training in these skills.
To help women and men in Ziarat, Loralai, and Harnai Districts, Concern Worldwide’s TVET programme is providing technical and vocational training by linking communities with government and private TVET and microfinance institutions. Many trainees previously had little access to vocational programmes, had dropped out of the formal education system, are unemployed, and/or disabled. Gaining the knowledge and skills to get higher paying jobs or start small businesses is helping these individuals improve their incomes.
To enhance the socio-economic status of the extreme poor and vulnerable groups in three poverty-stricken rural districts of Balochistan through increased access to relevant, good quality, and equitable TVET services and improved linkages with government and private TVET providers, microenterprise/microfinance services, and markets.
- Existing public and private sector TVET institutions are strengthened and are providing employment skills for which there is a demand.
- Women and men have improved access to relevant, market-oriented, and quality TVET services for enhanced income generation opportunities.
- The public image of and demand for TVET is improved, and linkages between TVET institutions, trainees, micro-finance/microenterprise institutions, and the market are strengthened.
- Conduct a market survey, identify training needs, and map the capacity of existing TVET providers.
- Support public and private TVET institutions, introduce new courses, and build the capacity of trainers.
- Provide relevant, market-oriented, quality vocational trainings.
- Introduce trainings for people with disabilities.
- Provide internship opportunities for course graduates.
- Provide trainings on developing businesses.
- Conduct community awareness and mobilisation campaigns to create demand for TVET.
- Promote linkages between TVET providers, trainees, communities, government agencies, markets, and microcredit/microenterprise institutions.
- Form TVET forums to share experiences and advocate for improved TVET in Balochistan.