CDB approves grant to support skills training, employment in Haiti

On Thursday December 10, the Caribbean Development Bank’s Board of Directors approved a USD12.51 million grant to help increase employment in Haiti’s key sectors by providing Haitians with better access to Technical Vocational Education and Training (TVET).

The Technical and Vocational Education and Training Project aims to provide both males and females in Haiti with greater and equitable access to high-quality and relevant TVET. It will also help provide Haiti with an expanded supply of skilled and employable labour to meet market needs for priority economic sectors such as construction, tourism and water.

“This project helps give Haitians a better chance of improving their livelihoods by equipping them with the right mix of skills and training to gain access to jobs in Haiti’s growing sectors. CDB is pleased to support the Government of Haiti in tapping the potential of technical vocational education and training to diversify and transform its economy,” said Daniel Best, Director of Projects, CDB.

In Haiti, access to TVET is limited and uneven. Only 23,000 students have access to TVET programmes, compared to Government’s 2015 target of 70,000. Students in some regions are underserved, lacking access to programmes such as mechanical engineering, construction and garment-making in their communities. In addition, girls and women are especially under-represented in traditional male-dominated TVET areas, instead training in business and commercial-related areas, home management and hospitality. Drop-out rates, because students lack the finances to sustain participation in TVET programmes, are as high as 70 percent for three-year courses of study.

A number of issues affect the quality and relevance of TVET in Haiti. Training centres are in disrepair and lack reliable supplies of water and electricity, and tools and equipment are obsolete and inadequate. For TVET managers and instructors, there is no formal training system and programmes and curricula do not meet labour market needs. Overall, underfunding and capacity issues affect the efficient management of TVET in Haiti, which lacks the systems and administrative and technical staff needed to operate optimally.

The Technical and Vocational Education and Training Project plans include:

  • enhancing the learning environment to help increase access to quality and relevant TVET through the construction of the St. Martin TVET Centre and provision of equipment, tools and curriculum support materials for the St. Martin TVET Centre and Jacmel TVET Centre.
  • enhancing institutional capacity for effective governance, management and coordination of a gender-responsive TVET system by providing support for initiatives such as the development of a National Qualifications Framework, a gender strategy for TVET, and community engagement and public awareness programmes.
  • building capacity for an integrated and sustainable TVET system through training for TVET officials, managers and instructors.
  • improving the support system for at-risk and vulnerable learners and trainees and gender-responsive TVET programmes.

The project aligns with CDB’s corporate priority of improving the quality of, and access to education, training and citizen security. It will be implemented by the Ministry of National Education and Vocational Training (MENFP) through the National Vocational Training Institute.