Empowering rural youth through vocational training in Madagascar


The Capacity Development for Education for All Programme (CapED) has been tackling unemployment and strengthening the Technical and Vocational Education and Training (TVET) sector in Madagascar since 2010. This has the knock on effect of reducing urban migration of low-skilled workers, as individuals are empowered and equipped with relevant skills corresponding to local market needs, enabling them to secure local jobs instead of relocating to large cities in search of employment.

For instance, with support from local partners such as the International Fund for Agricultural Development (IFAD) and UNDP who together contributed USD 1.75 million to the Programme, CapED strengthened 17 Vocational Training Centres and offered out-of-school rural youth in four pilot regions vocational training in areas relevant to the job market. Since 2014, 2,918 youths have been trained.

Similarly, other programmes aim to improve the financial independence of 750 locals, particularly women, living in the Tsingy Nature Reserve region. The first programme equips women with vocational skills in agriculture, producing handicrafts, entrepreneurship, accountancy and job-specific literacy to sell at local partner hotels. The second programme trains and certifies both women and men in local sustainable tourism trades, such as being a tour guide.

As well as helping empower individuals, CapED is supporting the country systemically improve TVET delivery nationwide. Following the CapED Programme’s successes in Madagascar, the president called for the first-ever National Employment and TVET Policy to increase job opportunities by reinforcing demand-driven TVET. In 2015, the policy, which was developed with CapED support, was legally adopted and a 5-year Operational Action Plan (2016-2021) was launched.

Expanding on this progress, in 2018, CapED supported the development of the country’s National Qualifications Framework (NQF). The Programme also helped establish and pilot a recognition of prior learning (RPL) process in the country, which helps individuals formally document the skills and knowledge they developed throughout their life to help them secure formal employment. In 2018, the process was officially legalized in Madagascar and CapED carried out a pilot with 78% of candidates successfully receiving certificates.

Looking ahead, the NQF will be fine-tuned and will facilitate RPL certification. The Programme will also continue to support vocational training centres to reach and train more out-of-school rural youths.