BGMEA supports initiative to create decent work opportunity for youth in RMG sector

Desk Report: The Bangladesh Garment Manufacturers and Exporters Association (BGMEA) will support an innovative new program from The Centre for Child Rights and Business (The Centre) to create decent work for young workers in Bangladesh’s ready-made garment industry.

This announcement follows a meeting between Faruque Hassan, President of BGMEA, and Ines Kaempfer, CEO at The Centre, in Dhaka to discuss opportunities to increase support for BGMEA members through implementation of The Centre’s Youth Development Program activities in the RMG sector.   

The Centre’s innovative Youth Development Programme combines activities to help out-of-work or disadvantaged youth in Bangladesh to access decent work and develop their skills, with packages of support that allow Bangladeshi RMG factories to recruit and cultivate a motivated, young workforce.

The Youth Development Programme builds on investments that Bangladeshi RMG factories have already made in human resources, compliance and health and safety systems, offering training and decent work for young workers, identifying suitable roles and workstations for young workers and avoiding hazardous work risks.

This enables factories to create a supportive environment for young workers that meets their specific needs and complies with international and local regulatory requirements.

Soft skills and developmental training support for young workers covers professional and personal development, covering areas such as technical skills development, basic education, literacy skills, financial literacy and basic computer skills, as well as soft and life skills, career skills, and prevention of gender-based violence.

Faruque Hassan, President of the BGMEA, said: “Bangladesh is passing a golden era in terms of demographic dividend as we have a young population. We have to capitalize on the opportunity for the greater benefit and prosperity of Bangladesh by turning young population into human resources with knowledge and skills. BGMEA looks into every opportunity to engage in initiatives like the Youth Development Programme to turn youth into the skilled and efficient workforce who will be able to contribute to the development of Bangladesh.”

Ines Kaempfer, CEO at The Centre for Child Rights and Business, said:  “Upskilling young people is key to the growth and development of the RMG sector. From delivering long-lasting improvements in recruitment and retention rates, improving young worker management, to developing the technical and soft skills of young workers, the Youth Development Programme not only improves the life skills and life chances of young workers, it offers the opportunity to Bangladesh’ RMG sector to become a driver for youth development. With the support of the BGMEA, we look forward to broadening participation of the Programme so we can spread its benefits to reach more young workers and RMG factories in Bangladesh”.

Neela Hosna Ara, Director, BGMEA; Krubaleni Arul Dass, Manager for Services and Products, Europe, Africa and Americas; and Quamrunnessa Babli, Country Manager, The Centre for Child Rights and Business were also present at the meeting held at BGMEA Complex on September 21.