Bridging the Skills Gap for Increased Refugee Employment

by Charlie Grosso

from Hello Future

Our solution

Hello Future bridges the education gap for adolescent refugees so they may take advantage of existing and future employment opportunities. We create a path forward for refugee teens by leveraging mobile-based technology. Our program provides hardware (smartphone), connectivity, and on-site education workshops taught by accredited local instructors who, combined with our local teacher’s aides, deliver our curriculum in the students’ native language.

What's the business opportunity for host and refugee community

We create local jobs every session for in-country coordinators, teachers, translators, and teachers’ aides. The impact of our workshops on refugee teens means that they will be qualified for better-paying local jobs, creating economic independence and self-reliance, thereby contributing to the host communities. Educating and empowering the refugee community to care for themselves creates active citizens reducing the burden on host communities and benefiting the host country.

How has it been implemented and what impact it had

We successfully completed our pilot project in 2017 with young Syrian Kurd refugees in the Arbat Camp in Iraqi Kurdistan. Partnering with STEP, a UK-based NGO, we worked with 22 youth, including 12 girls and 10 boys. The program lasted five weeks – a one-week intensive phase with classes for three hours a day, and four weeks of a student project phase that met three days a week for three hours each day. The pilot had a 100% retention rate and nearly every student graduated.

Our Skills and Experience

The jobs of today and into the future are in science, technology, telecom, engineering, and the environment. Our solution addresses the inadequate educational supports available to refugees without creating a burden for the host community. By focusing on 21st century digital skills that are essential for modern work, both the refugees and the host community benefit from a more skilled and employable workforce. One that improves the lives of refugees and the economies of their new homes.