Dubai, UAE: INJAZ Al-Arab, the regional office of Junior Achievement (JA) Worldwide, launched the third edition of its highly successful ‘Expand Your Horizon’ (EYH) initiative earlier this week. Designed to empower youth to take up careers across a broad range of private sector industries, the campaign involves a coalition of global entities from growth industries focused on offering work-readiness and internship opportunities to Arab youth across the Middle East and North Africa region. To coincide with the launch, INJAZ Al-Arab also revealed the key findings of research conducted by its partner Deloitte to identify the trends and opportunities for Arab youth in the hospitality, media, pharmaceutical and professional services industries.
According to the research, the MENA region continues to show high youth unemployment rates at 30% for a variety of factors including unwillingness to work in the private sector, mismatch of skills, competition from more qualified expatriates, inefficient use of e-recruitment channels and limited opportunities for women amongst others. The report also highlights a persistent gender gap with the rates of young women’s participation in the labour market being significantly lower than those of young men. The huge disparity in youth unemployment rates were also laid bare in the report, which found that youth unemployment is almost five times higher than the joblessness rate for older adults. The survey also found that aside from salary, the top factors driving employment loyalty are training and development opportunities (36%), job security (27%), independence and control over one’s work (22%) and a fun office environment (21%).
Omar Fahoum, CEO, Deloitte, Middle East explains, “Deloitte’s relationship with INJAZ Al-Arab dates back more than 13 years, and we are pleased to continue supporting INJAZ on the EYH initiative as a research and industry partner. While youth unemployment continues to be a significant economic challenge in the MENA region, it is those youth who also represent one of the region’s biggest opportunities for future development and progress.”
Speaking at the launch Akef Aqrabawi, INJAZ Al-Arab CEO said, “Continuing the success of previous editions, we are delighted to be launching Expand Your Horizon 3.0. As part of this initiative, we will be working in collaboration with our private sector partners to address the barriers and misconceptions that stop young people from applying for jobs and showcase the opportunities that exist in the respective sectors. We are dedicated to overcoming unemployment in the region by cultivating a culture of entrepreneurship and business innovation among Arab youth and to date we have reached more than XXX (please insert) students. We rely on the continued generosity of our corporate partners and would like to extend our gratitude to them. Without their support we would not be able to achieve our ambitious goals.”
A key component of Expand Your Horizon is the creation of public service announcement (PSA), which have been created by MBC Group and will be broadcast across their MENA channels. The strategically placed segments will air over a period of four weeks after Ramadan and will feature success stories and interviews with key staff to engage and inspire millions of individuals.
Mazen Hayek, Official Spokesperson of MBC Group said, “We are proud to support INJAZ Al-Arab given our mutual commitment to empowering Arab youth. Through the PSAs we hope to educate youth and their families about growth industries and help them better plan for future careers.”
David Leman, Chief Human Resources Office for Middle East and Africa, Marriott International added,” Following the overwhelmingly positive response we have received in previous years, we are excited about working with INJAZ Al-Arab and hope that as many people as possible will benefit from this visionary program.”
“If we pave the way well for our youth by providing them with a positive atmosphere and giving them the chance to contribute even with their very little experience in life, they will learn, excel and change the world. Everyone will then be in a better place. And we can guarantee a promising future for us all”, said Osama Braiwish – Novartis Levant Head.
Akif Tashkandi, Head of HR Novartis Saudi Arabia and spokesperson said; “The Pharma sector is a key pillar in healthcare industry where it drives innovation through R&D and spreads this knowledge to healthcare professionals. This is an untapped field for Arab youth especially within the GCC where we need to spread awareness, minimize the gap between academic learning and the working environment, and develop the right set of skills in our young generations”.
Expand Your Horizon also features an interactive microsite that provides visitors with critical information about general growth industries and their skill demands as well as practical information about resume writing, applying for internships and other job search skills.
Named as one of the top 100 NGOs in the world by Global Journal, INJAZ Al-Arab has influenced the lives of over 2 million students since its inception in 2004. INJAZ Al-Arab is a member of Junior Achievement, the world’s largest and fastest-growing youth business organisation dedicated to educating students about workforce readiness, entrepreneurship and financial literacy through experiential, hands-on programs.
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About INJAZ Al-Arab
INJAZ Al-Arab harnesses the mentorship of Arab business leaders to help inspire a culture of entrepreneurship and business innovation among Arab youth, and was named one of the top 100 NGOs by Global Journal in 2012 and 2013.
Operating in 14 countries across the Middle East and North Africa (MENA) region, INJAZ Al-Arab is a confederation of national operations collaborating with corporate volunteers and Ministries of Education to provide experiential education and training to Arab youth in work readiness, financial literacy and entrepreneurship.
INJAZ Al-Arab is a member of Junior Achievement Worldwide (JA Worldwide). To learn more about INJAZ Al-Arab, please visit: www.injazalarab.org.
© Press Release 2018