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Vocational training gives youths the chance to succeed

A Plan program in Sri Lanka provided these young men with vocational training that enabled them to establish careers.
A Plan program in Sri Lanka provided these young men with vocational training that enabled them to establish careers.
January 28, 2010

Young people are being given the chance to improve their employment prospects with vocational training courses supported by Plan.

Pradeep Buddhika and Pradeep Lasantha are two young men from a remote village in the southern Sri Lankan town of Tissa. Both of them attended secondary school, and like many other young people in their area, left school about a year ago without a definite career plan. They found it hard to gain employment without prior experience or skills in a specific field, and there were few opportunities for vocational training.

Buddhika spotted some handbills advertising the 'Mage Heta' vocational training program in Ambalantota and Lasantha heard about the course from some of his friends. "We were interested in motor mechanics, so we thought of choosing a training course in this field," says Lasantha.

The 'Mage Heta' program is a Plan initiative which provides vocational training to young people. In partnership with local service providers, training centers are set up with all the required facilities. The eventual aim is that the centers will become self-sustaining.

So, Buddhika took a course in welding, while Lasantha completed a three-month course on motor mechanics. As well as training, the course provided them with job placements and today they are both working in a garage as trainees in their respective fields.

They are both happy about the career options they have chosen, and are keen to continue to learn. "In addition to theory and practical knowledge, the course also taught us management skills," says Buddhika.

Learn more about Plan's work in Sri Lanka.