Gov. Edgar Chatto welcomed Department of Labor and Employment (DOLE) Sec. Rosalinda Dimapilis-Baldoz at the Jobstart Employers’ Partnership Forum on Monday.
Baldoz said Bohol is covered by all major programs of DOLE that is employment facilitation, social dialogue, and social protection.
She recalled previous visits to Bohol where she cited most unique local government support under the leadership of Gov. Chatto, who she said, ably chairs the Tripartite Industrial Peace Council and even provides for budgetary support for it, a support that is unseen in many local government units.
She alsoÂ emphasized the strong support of Chatto for the welfare of workers in the distribution of assistance for displaced workers after the earthquake back in 2013.
On Monday, DOLE in partnership with the Asian Development Bank (ADB) and the Government of Canada rolled out its Jobstart program in Bohol through an Employersâ€™ Partnership Program attended by 40 representatives of the business and academe sector.
The career development pathway program that is Jobstart focuses on unemployed High School graduates with a year or no experience.
The Bohol Employment and Placement Office (BEPO) under the Office of the Governor, facilitates the pre-qualification and registration of Boholano youth and select beneficiaries, which job-readiness will be assessed and provided life skills training, career guidance, and labor market information.
BEPO will then match the trained youth to available internships and provide referrals, after which the youth will train under TESDA or under private employers to acquire the necessary skills for the internship with the employers.
Under the program, the government partners with employers that offer six-month internships at reduced cost. An intern then gets a stipend equivalent to 75 percent of the minimum wage.
The beneficiaries will have the career guidance and life skills training for eight days. It includes modules on personal branding, financial literacy, health and well-being, job hunting skills and interpersonal skills. They then undergo a three-month technical/vocational training as determined by their employers before their on-the-job training for another three months.
Bohol is the first province to roll out the Jobstart program. The program rollout in Bohol follows after success in 4 pilot cities in Luzon: Quezon City in Metro Manila, San Fernando in Pampanga, Taguig City, and General Trias in Cavite.
Baldoz reported positive feedback from both employer and the beneficiaries in the midterm assessment of the pilot implementation. Most of the companies end up absorbing beneficiaries as regular employees, she said.
The program, she added, is in line with thrust to invest in the countryâ€™s human resources and lower the unemployment and underemployment rates in the country.
Also present during the forum were Counsellor and Head of Cooperation of the Embassy of Canada in Manila Stephen Weaver, DOLE Bureau of Local Employment Dominique Tutay, DOLE Region 7 Director Exequiel Sarcauga and DOLE Bohol Provincial Manager Gerry Guidaben.
During the forum, Gov. Chatto and Baldoz also signed the Memorandum of Understanding on the National Skills Registry Program, a web based registry system that addresses talent matching through a database that captures pool of talents.
Its is also a pioneering program that will serve as an online avenue for workers and employers in Bohol to easily find each other. The Provincial Government of Bohol intends for the skills registry system to become a platform both for local businesses and investors to access information on the supply of available skilled workers as well as for jobseekers to access demand for workers from employers. (Leah/EDCOM)