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Politics News

Sweden, Mercy Corps sign US$5.8m agreement

The Embassy of Sweden and Mercy Corps have signed an agreement of about US$5.8m aiming at empowering the young people of Liberia through a program which comes in phase three of Promoting Sustainable Partnerships for Economic Transformation (Prospects).

Mercy Corps Country Director Mr. Douglas Copper and Swedish Embassy Charge d’ affaires Ms. Elisabeth Harleman signed on behalf of their respective institutions on Tuesday, 26 September at Mercy Corps office on 15th Street, Sinkor, suburb of Monrovia.

During the signing attended by representatives from Liberian ministries including Ministry of Youth and Sports and Ministry of Labor, the Sweden Embassy official Ms. Harleman said her Embassy has taken a decision to support the program with 46 million Swedish Kronor or about US$5.8m.

Ms. Harleman reveals that the aims of the support are to contribute to increased youth employment, work to improve the skills and confidence of 16,500 youth to seek economic opportunities and provide 1,302 young men and women on – the – job training and access to employment information to improve their employment chances.

She says the program expected to be implemented in Montserrado, Bong and Nimba Counties for the coming three years through Prospects phase three builds on previous two phases of the program which reached about 12,000 young men and women.

“The primary objectives [are] to support young Liberian men and women to find employment or become entrepreneurs; to support innovations for youth employment by tapping into private sector creativity and ability to create employment for young people,” she says.

Included in the objectives of supporting Prospects phase three are to support results, learning, and research around youth employment issues in ways that contribute to national policy changes and greater coordination between youth stakeholders.

Mercy Corps Country Director Douglas Cooper expressed thanks to Ms. Harleman and the Sweden Embassy for the support and their interest to sign the agreement aimed at empowering the youth of Liberia.

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Prospects Program Manager Mr. Nyema Richards says he is proud of the significant impact Prospects is making nationally, particularly taking into account the empowerment of young people, some of whom work in government institutions after being provided job – ready skills.

Mr. Richards says as a Liberian, he and his team of workers at Prospects are proud of the work the institution is doing here in helping young Liberians in the next step in their lives in line with what government has been trying to do through its Poverty Reduction Strategy (PRS).-

By Winston W. Parley

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