ON September 8, the U.S. government, through the United States Agency for International Development (USAID), gathered over 150 local partners to advance employment, education, and entrepreneurship opportunities for Filipino out-of-school youth (OSY) as new drivers of economic recovery and inclusive growth.
With the theme “ONE IN MOTION: Shaping a Shared Future with the New Generation of Workers and Entrepreneurs,” the USAID Opportunity 2.0 Private Sector Summit is the first nationwide face-to-face gathering of representatives from business, government, and civil society to craft policy proposals to support OSY and to sustain the gains achieved in recent years.
The Summit introduced upskilled OSY as the “new generation of workers and entrepreneurs” who possess the digital skills and entrepreneurial spirit to help businesses meet the demands of the Philippine economy. Participants also underscored the need for multi-sectoral collaboration through the Youth Development Alliance (YDA), a mechanism created by the Opportunity 2.0 program for local stakeholders to coordinate programs, maximize resources, and drive policies that will benefit OSY.
“Arming this untapped workforce potential with in-demand work and entrepreneurial skills will both boost economic recovery and contribute to achieving more resilient and inclusive growth,” said USAID Philippines Acting Deputy Mission Director Jennifer Crow. “As future employers and engines of economic activity, the private sector is a vital partner in this effort.”
Since its launch in 2019, Opportunity 2.0 has engaged over 850 private sector partners nationwide, comprising 23 business groups and organizations, 130 large companies, and 640 micro, small and medium enterprises. To date, 15 cities in the Philippines have established YDAs. Chaired by the city mayor, the alliances are composed of government line agencies, local business associations, education and training institutions, and youth organizations that drive youth-focused programs and policymaking.