“This program increased my experience level… I learned a trade, how to work, and build my future,” says Waleed, who is gaining the skills needed to pursue a career in automotive repair and maintenance through EquipYouth—a program that taught him not only technical skills, but the highly sought after employability skills demanded by local employers. 

Waleed and other young Jordanians come together in the video posted below to share their experiences with EquipYouth—a global, three-year initiative of the International Youth Foundation (IYF) and the Caterpillar Foundation. To amplify its impact in Jordan, the program joined forces with Youth for the Future, an initiative of IYF and the US Agency for International Development (USAID), to provide underserved youth with skill building, internships, on-the-job training, and job placement services. 


EquipYouth is preparing 750 unemployed Jordanian youth, ages 18 to 27, for careers as technicians in high-demand mechanical trades such as automotive repair, industrial maintenance, forklift operation and heating, ventilating, and air conditioning (HVAC) maintenance. Approximately a quarter of participating youth go on to enroll in non-industrial career tracks such as retail services and bookkeeping.

Partnerships with employers and trade associations in Jordan play a critical role in the success of both programs, which pursue sector-specific approaches. Youth receive an integrated package of certified technical training, coupled with IYF’s Passport to Success® life skills training, as well as a structured internship with an employer.

To engage a steady stream of potential employers, IYF and its local training partners conduct regular roundtable discussions with sector-specific business leaders and other key stakeholders to assess labor market needs and identify job opportunities for youth.

By 2015, EquipYouth aims to place over 50 percent of youth in jobs or internships within six months of graduation.