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6 FAQs About the New Economic Empowerment Program

6 FAQs About the New Economic Empowerment Program

By Alyssa and Dustin Anderson

How does Economic Empowerment fit into the holistic child development model?

Children’s Cup focuses on five essential elements to ensure children develop into strong and thriving leaders in their communities. These five elements are food and water, medical care, education, discipleship and economic empowerment.

We found that while the first four elements were impactful and essential, there was something missing. Children were graduating from high school with no prospects of sustainable jobs or university degrees. As the final step in holistic child development, the economic empowerment program aims to prepare sponsored children for economic sustainability through job preparedness and placement.

Children’s Cup’s economic empowerment program uses market-driven research to determine how to train up young leaders in each country in which we operate.

What is “market-driven” job training?

The term “market-driven” refers to the requirements of each individual local market. We ask, “what are the labor needs in each country sponsored children are located?” ‘Cup staff members research each country in which ‘Cup operates by interviewing local business owners to find out what skills they look for when hiring. This could be anything from hospitality, carpentry, or business skills to soft skills such as communication, critical thinking and problem solving.

Is it the same as “skills training”?

In the past, Children’s Cup has facilitated classes where teens learn how to make handmade items to sell to the U.S. market. While these classes served a purpose, they didn’t holistically develop the child for economic success in their local market. The goal isn’t to teach simple skills and sell items to the U.S. market; the goal is to empower a child with locally demanded skills for a job.

What are the local markets demanding?

After conducting research in Swaziland, 100% of the businesses interviewed said work ethic was their most important need for entry-level hire. They told us that they desperately need individuals that are hardworking, self-starters with integrity and strong problem solving skills. Furthermore, these businesses expressed willingness to teach trade-specific skills to graduates of the Economic Empowerment program.

Is ‘Cup promising jobs to every student?

No. Children’s Cup is committed to building and sustaining relationships with businesses in the countries in which our sponsored children are located. We promise to assist students who successfully complete the economic empowerment program by connecting them with the local businesses partnered with ‘Cup. Through the economic empowerment program, Children’s Cup students are equipped with the skills and abilities necessary to obtain a job. It is up to the graduate to put what he or she learned into practice in order to secure and maintain an entry-level job. 

What about high-achieving students who could go to university?

We understand there will be some students that demonstrate the capacity to further their education through pursuing an advanced degree. For these bright students, ‘Cup will facilitate connections to local trade schools, universities and scholarships (within ‘Cup and externally). Our local staff on the ground will be hands-on helping these high-achieving students apply for admission into reputable local colleges. We believe students who show extraordinary promise should be afforded the opportunity to reach for their dreams.