Running on its second tier of implementation, the CPSC-GOI (Government of India) Skills Development Program for Poverty Alleviation (SDPA) Project continues to benefit more TVET professionals in CPSC member countries through the conduct of Special In-Country Programs on Champion Leaders Development Program for TVET Skills for Poverty Alleviation; Afghanistan being the latest beneficiary.

Program organizers, guests and participants during the inaugural ceremonies

The latest SDPA program was jointly organized by CPSC and the National Skills Development Program (NSDP), Ministry of Labor, Social Affairs Martyrs and Disabled (MoLSAMD), Islamic Republic of Afghanistan from September 28 to October 2, 2013. Afghanistan’s Deputy Minister for Finance and Administration Samimullah Sultani and Member Parliament Ms. Anarkali Hunaryar of MoLSAMD graced the inaugural session of the program.

A total of 26 participants mostly coming from training centers or TVET schools and institutions in the country or who are engaged in the field of community development through TVET skills enhancement to alleviate poverty.

The program revolved around three major modules which are Promoting TVET Skills for Poverty Alleviation; Generic Skills for Employability; and Stimulating Technical & Social Entrepreneurship Skills for Poverty alleviation. These modules are anchored in the overall aim of the training program which is to strengthen the capability of participants to formulate plan, design and implement programs in their respective countries on different aspects of poverty alleviation through TVET skills.

Dr. Hazrat Hussain, CPSC Faculty Consultant and Program Coordinator and Resource Person in one of the sessions during the program

Embedded in to the ICP program was the National Seminar on "Building Skills for Employability: Trends and Perspectives".

Honorable Minister Madam Amna Afzali, of Afghanistan’s Federal Ministry of Education graced the inaugural ceremonies of the seminar. In her inaugural remarks she expressed her appreciation on the significant role of CPSC in the development of TVET in Afghanistan and affirmed the ministry’s support to CPSC’s activities. Afghanistan’s Deputy Minister for Education Mr. Asif Nang was also present during the occasion and delivered speech focusing on the prospects of TVET in the economic development of the country.

Dr. Enayatullah Mayel, National Program Director of NSDP who acted as Program Supervisor of the Special In-Country Program was also one of the Resource Speakers of the seminar. He described the progress of the different initiatives taken by NSDP to revitalize the country’s TVET system and highlighted the role of regional TVET bodies to extend their services for quantitative and qualitative expansion of the system. On the other hand, Dr. Hazrat Hussain, CPSC Faculty Consultant, who was also one of the speakers and Coordinator of both the Seminar and the Special ICP, presented the SDPA project framework for poverty alleviation through TVET skill development, its current status and shared some improvements done on the SDPA framework and implementation.

Another speaker who is from an NGO Hand n Hand operating in Afghanistan, Mr. Abdur Rahim Nasry, explained the role of micro financing scheme in alleviating poverty and empowering people through the said NGO. He emphasized that all skill development program may be complemented with access to credit for facilitating startup of small enterprising activity.

Federal Minister for Education Ms. Amna Afzal

The Director General for Policy and Planning from Ministry of Counter Narcotic, Dr. M. Osman, who was among the speakers, revealed that there are about one million drug addict in Afghanistan while the government has the capacity and facility for the treatment of only one percent of them. He termed that lack of opportunities, lack of proper skills for securing job, and resulting unemployment as the main cause of youths’ drug addiction. He highlighted the importance of skill training and employment for youths and its role in reducing the chances of addiction. Honorable Minister Nang distributed Certificates of Recognition among the resource persons of the seminar.

The program was under the helm of Dr. Mohammad Naim Yaakub, CPSC Director General and Dr. Mayel who both acted as Program Supervisors. The program’s coordination was under the charge of Dr. Hussain who was assisted by the Local Program Coordinator Mr. Mohammad Asif Stanikzai, Program Coordinator of NSDP. Mr. Hamid Omarzad, Head of Finance and Administration and Acting Project Manager, NSDP acted as local resource person.