With its prime location at the gateway of the Mediterranean, Morocco has long been a key economic link between Europe and Africa. But the young people who live here still struggle to find jobs, even in thriving sectors like IT and tourism. Sometimes the problem is as simple as not knowing where to find work: Roughly half of all Moroccans lack web access, and support for job-seekers is limited.
As of this month, though, Moroccan youth are getting a helping hand in the labor market: Souktel and the Education for Employment Foundation (EFE) have launched a new mobile phone job information service which lets youth search for available work via text message.
The service supports EFE’s wider “MORAD” project, which aims to increase the employability skills of 15,500 unemployed and disadvantaged youth in Morocco through skills training, career counseling, and professional development resources. “MORAD” is part of a four-year partnership between EFE and the MasterCard Foundation.
For Souktel, this new service builds on previous successes linking youth with jobs in Morocco. In 2009, it ran a pilot version of the mobile JobMatch service for 1,000 at-risk youth, in partnership with the Near East Foundation. This time, at least 5,000 job-seekers are expected to access the service, and EFE's own staff will also send SMS alerts about training opportunities directly to users.
“Through SoukTel’s JobMatch service, we aim to enhance our role of linking job seekers to employers” said Ron Bruder, EFE Founder and Chair. “Together, we will create a brighter future for thousands of youth”.
Souktel project manager Shannon Gavin adds: "As an emerging market, Morocco is an economy with huge growth potential. But the younger generation can often get left by sidelines. With this new service, we’re tackling youth unemployment head-on. We hope this can help create a more efficient labor market, and connect more youth with meaningful work”.