Supporting Decent Jobs for Youth in the Sahel


The overall objective is to support country-level operationalization of the Global Initiative on Decent Jobs for Youth in the Sahel region. The commitment has a particular thematic focus on promoting quality apprenticeships and supporting youth in the rural economy. The commitment aims to expand the strategic multi-stakeholder alliance of Decent Jobs for Youth, scale up action through country-level pilot interventions, and promote knowledge about what works and how to improve labour market outcomes of youth. The project is implemented through a collaboration between the Grand Duchy of Luxembourg, the International Labour Organization (ILO) and national and sub-regional youth employment stakeholders.


Luxembourg, Ministry of Foreign and European Affairs, Development Cooperation and Humanitarian Affairs Government or intergovernmental entity

Policy, advocacy and convening power; Financial and/or in-kind contribution


  • International Labour Organization (ILO)

    United Nations system entity

    Technical assistance, expertise and implementation; Policy, advocacy and convening power

Sustainable Development Goals & targets

  • 4.3 By 2030, ensure equal access for all women and men to affordable and quality technical, vocational and tertiary education, including university
  • 4.4 By 2030, substantially increase the number of youth and adults who have relevant skills, including technical and vocational skills, for employment, decent jobs and entrepreneurship
  • 8.6 By 2020, substantially reduce the proportion of youth not in employment, education or training
  • 8.b By 2020, develop and operationalize a global strategy for youth employment and implement the Global Jobs Pact of the International Labour Organization

Achievement At Glance

  1. 150 young people benefited from an apprenticeship programme in the construction sector in Burkina Faso;
  2. New tools developed and disseminated for capacity building;
  3. New evidence generated and access to information facilitated to guide public policies on youth employment;
  4. New partnerships and advocacy campaign;
  5. A quality apprenticeship system developed for Burkina Faso.


Key Highlight On Guiding Principle

  1. Quality education and skills development

Quality apprenticeships was at the centre stage of the project; with new international research products produced, capacity building opportunities provided for ILO constituents in West Africa and with a pilot apprenticeship programme in the construction sector and new studies to improve the national apprenticeship system in Burkina Faso implemented.

  1. Immediate benefits, sustainable impact

Combining immediate action with long-term policy interventions: while the pilot apprenticeship programme served as a concrete example of what quality apprenticeships could look like, the work done to improve the system, to ensure long lasting impact to further develop an apprenticeship system that works, is formalised and institutionalised with the support of the government and social partners.

  1. Public-private sector cooperation

The role of the private sector is key to the success of any apprenticeship system. Young people learn with on-the-job training in the companies, while also getting some technical and training in vocational centres. An emphasis was put on this partnership throughout the project, especially through the pilot programme in the construction sector in Burkina Faso.


The project between the Grand Duchy of Luxembourg and the ILO aims to support the operationalization of Decent Jobs for Youth, the global initiative for youth employment under the 2030 Agenda for Sustainable Development. The collaboration focuses on concrete thematic actions at national and sub-regional level of the Sahel region to maximize the impact of youth employment policies and programmes and contribute to the knowledge base on decent jobs for youth. The project is based on four inter-linked elements: (i) Developing diagnostics and data for youth employment, (ii) Initiating pilot interventions at country-level, (iii) Strengthening capacity at country-level for the design, implementation and monitoring and evaluation of youth employment policies and programmes, and (iv) Disseminating good practices for youth employment at country and sub-regional level.

Deliverables and links to SDG targets

  • Progress: 2,369,668 out of 2369668 United States dollars committed to public-private and civil society partnerships in support of decent jobs for youth

    8.6 By 2020, substantially reduce the proportion of youth not in employment, education or training

    Financial and technical support provided by the government of Luxembourg and the ILO for the operationalization of Decent Jobs for Youth in the Sahel region.

    BY: Jun 2020





USD 2,369,668

Estimated total value of the commitment


young people to benefit directly from this commitment

Target: Only young people 15-19, 20-24, 25-29

Challenges faced in implementation

One of the main challenges during the implementation of the activities in Burkina Faso was the deteriorating security throughout the country. To ensure a limited negative impact, it was decided to concentrate our efforts in the capital, Ouagadougou, and its surroundings. With this strategy, we were able to mitigate the risks.


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