Bank al Etihad sponsors youth entrepreneurship program Shabbek Wa Ibtaker for the second time!
Unemployment is one of the challenges Jordan’s economy and society are facing today. With the advent of COVID-19, the country’s youth and young adults have witnessed the rise of unemployment rates during the second quarter of 2020.
At the beginning of the year, the unemployment rate increased from 19.3% to 23% in the second quarter. This 3.8% increase has affected and challenged Jordan’s young men and women across the country.
We believe in Jordan’s growing and ambitious youth. And, we know that in order for them to succeed and realize their potential, the right opportunities must be given. We want to support and empower them to contribute to society and shape their future.
For the second year in a row, we extended our support to the youth entrepreneurship program, Shabbek Wa Ibtaker, launched by Wasel, an NGO for awareness and education.
Wasel targets unemployed youth from different Jordanian governorates and works with them on the ideation phase of their basic business ideas and then provides them with all the training they need to launch their businesses. They are then connected to national incubators with the goal of having them pitch their business to incubators and accelerators.
For the past 3 months, a group of 20 young men and women between the ages of 18 and 28, from various governorates, took part in a series of training provided in collaboration with the Chamber of Commerce, Chamber of Industry, Jordan Investment Commission, and a number of business advisors. They each provided them with the necessary skills and knowledge to launch their own entrepreneurial projects.
Jordanian SMEs and startups play an important role in the economy by increasing inclusion and creating job opportunities. They also work to improve products and services across various fields. In fact, SMEs and startups contribute to around 35% of job opportunities across Jordan.
“My business idea stayed with me, but I was unsure on how to kickstart it and what steps I should take to make it a reality until I joined the Program.” – Ghalia, 22 years old
Shabbek Wa Ibtaker provided sessions that ranged from studying market needs, feasibility studies, project proposal, marketing and promotion, pitching, legalities and procedures, and investing.
At the same time, Bank al Etihad hosted a session on finance management where participants were introduced to the importance of growing their savings. Grace Kishek, Senior Manager of the Women’s Market, emphasized the importance of differentiating between basic wants and needs, in order to set the right priorities and goals while reducing extra costs. During this time, participants were also able to open their own digital bank accounts with 50 JOD, so they can start budgeting and growing their money for their future.
“I started having confidence in launching my personal projects and presenting them in a convincing and professional manner.” – Ala’a – 22 years old
Shabbek Wa Ibtaker participants greatly improved their skills and knowledge. Impact indicator evaluations conducted by Naua and Wasel showed that their familiarity with commercial law reached 46%, while their familiarity with product pricing and proposal writing reached 50%. To top it off, one participant’s project has moved up a level as it was selected among 40 projects in total to be incubated.