April 20, 2024, 12:27 am

The ProGRESS Project Kicked off to build the foundation for an inclusive skills system.

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Update : Sunday, March 19, 2023

Staff Reporter, Dhaka : The Ministry of Education (MoE) of the Government of Bangladesh and the International Labour Organization (ILO) Bangladesh launched a new project name “ProGRESS” on Sunday, March 19, 2023 at the Ball Room of the Banani Sheraton Hotel Dhaka. This initiative launched to strengthen the TVET and enterprise development systems, to make these more inclusive and accessible for women by working on policies, systems, and operational levels. ProGRESS stands for “Promoting Gender Responsive Enterprise Development and TVET Systems”. The Project will be implemented by the Directorate of Technical Education (DTE), Technical and Madrasah Education Division (TMED), Ministry of Education with technical assistance from ILO. The Government of Canada is the funding partner of the project.

The Honorable Minister of Education, Dr. Dipu Moni MP, graced the Launching Ceremony as the Chief Guest.

Furthermore, the Canadian High Commissioner to Bangladesh H.E. Ms. Lilly Nicholls was present as the Special Guests.

The Senior Secretary of the TMED of MoE Mr. Md. Kamal Hossain chaired the program, while the Director General (Additional Secretary) of the DTE of TMED of the Ministry of Education Dr. Md. Omar Faruque, the Country Director of ILO Bangladesh Mr. Tuomo Poutiainen and representative from other development partners, & government agencies were also present at the event.

Speaking at the launch, the honorable Minister of Education Dr. Dipu Moni M.P. said, “An effective TVET and Skills development system can help the students to enter the labour market with the right skills for self and wage employment. Which is crucial for the economic and social empowerment of women. The ProGRESS project will make valuable impact on the government’s plan towards achieving gender equality in Bangladesh which eventually reduce poverty.”

The project designed to positively address the issues linked to low labour force participation of female workers both in wage and employment markets; and limited access to business development services required for initiating self-employment. It will also support the promotion of employability of the female workforce of Bangladesh to improve their economic wellbeing and maximize their contribution to the national economic growth through strategic improvement in TVET and enterprise development systems to transform them to become more inclusive and accessible for women by gender mainstreaming policy advocacy, enterprise development and skills training.

The High Commissioner of Canada in Bangladesh H.E. Lilly Nicholls said, “The ProGRESS project is designed to help address major challenges and barriers that disproportionately hinder female labour force of Bangladesh from equitably and productively participating in the labour market in a sustainable and resilient manner”.

Young men and women entering the labour market will access a wider range of occupations and sectors through the improved TVET programmes that offer training, apprenticeship and entrepreneurship skills development programmes that meet market opportunities. The project aims to increase the number of women in Bangladesh employed with decent work in a broader range of occupations.

Speaking at the event, ILO Country Director for Bangladesh Tuomo Poutiainen said, “ILO is supporting the Government of Bangladesh to implement the 4th Decent Work Country Programme 2022-26 where one of the important priorities of it is gender equality and ending gender-based violence: empowering women and girls. ProGRESS project will address the DWCP’s major pillars inclusive decent employment creation and ending gender-based violence.”

The total budget for the initiative is 20 million CAD. The ILO and the Directorate of Technical Education will work closely to implement the project for the period of five years starting from Year 2022 in collaboration with the National Skill Development Authority under the Prime Minister’s Office, Ministry of Women and Children Affairs, Ministry of Chittagong Hill Tracts, Ministry of Expatriates’ Welfare and Overseas Employment, Ministry of Youth and Sports, SME Foundation and Bangladesh Small and Cottage Industries Corporation (BSCIC) along with  employers’ and workers’ organizations.

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