Basic education and vocational skills development

African girls raising their hands.
The SDC considers basic education and vocational skills development to be interconnected and complementary. © UN Photo / Marco Dormino

A good education lays the foundation for the economic and social development not only of the individual but of society as a whole. Education helps to reduce poverty and social and economic disparities and stimulates economic growth. The SDC pursues the objective of quality education accessible to people of all ages by focusing on two priority sectors: basic education and vocational skills development.

Education in any society is fundamental to achieving sustainable development underpinned by peace and social cohesion. Ensuring inclusive and equitable quality education and promoting lifelong learning opportunities for all is the fourth sustainable development goal of the 2030 Agenda for Sustainable Development. Along with achieving decent work for all within the framework of sustained economic growth and eradicating poverty, this goal is central to the SDC's activities.

As a vehicle for raising public awareness, education can help improve hygiene practices, advocate​​ responsible agricultural production, and improve public knowledge about the effects of climate change.

In many developing and transition countries there is a real need to improve the education system. It is equally important to ensure access to education in fragile contexts, where social disparities tend to worsen.

In the area of education, the SDC works to improve the quality of both basic education and vocational skills development. The SDC sees both components as interconnected and complementary, not only from a linear educational perspective. Depending on particular needs and contexts, it can make good sense to teach basic education and vocational skills development modules simultaneously to provide young people with a set of marketable basic skills to maximise their chances for professional integration.

Strengthening educational opportunities in developing countries and countries in transition is a priority of Switzerland's international cooperation in the years ahead. 

Basic education

The SDC promotes quality basic education that is adapted to the needs of each population and accessible to as many people as possible. To this end, it works with several partner countries in reforming their education systems.

Vocational skills development

By working with the public authorities and the private sector, the SDC is able to develop training programmes tailored to the needs of the market. It thereby enables growing numbers of young people to find decent employment and to contribute to their country’s development.

Current projects

Object 73 – 84 of 88

Bosnia and Herzegovina: Improving nursing care for better health services

A nurse sitting in a treatment room.

01.12.2017 - 30.11.2022

In Bosnia and Herzegovina nurses make up the largest group of healthcare professionals. However, the potential offered by their proximity to local communities is underexploited. They are often responsible for administrative tasks rather than patient care and, with limited career prospects, many nurses are attracted by better working conditions in Western Europe. This is regrettable because nurses and the care they provide can be a gateway to better health services for people living in rural areas and marginalised communities.

Country/region Topic Period Budget
Bosnia and Herzegovina
Health
Education

Health systems strengthening
Primary health care
Education facilities and training

01.12.2017 - 30.11.2022


CHF  5’125’000



Programme Régional pour la Formation Professionnelle (PROFOR)

01.12.2017 - 31.07.2024

Le manque de qualifications nécessaires à une insertion socio-économique demeure un défi en Afrique de l’Ouest. Afin de favoriser l’employabilité des jeunes, le PROFOR soutient les dynamiques régionales de mutualisation des ressources et pratiques de formation professionnelle afin d’accélérer le développement de systèmes de formation efficaces et répondant aux besoins économiques des pays et de contribuer au développement économique et à la cohésion sociale de la sous-région.


Inclusion financière dans l'Union Economique et Monétaire Ouest Africaine (UEMOA)

01.12.2017 - 31.12.2024

En Afrique de l’Ouest, le faible accès aux services financiers ne permet pas de moderniser les exploitations familiales et de développer des activités productives. La DDC soutient la stratégie régionale d’inclusion financière de l’Union économique et monétaire ouest-africaine et la Swiss Capacity Building Facility pour accroitre l’accès à de nombreux jeunes et femmes aux services financiers et leur offrir des opportunités économiques permettant ainsi de s’attaquer aux causes de la migration et de l’insécurité.


Strengthening the Climate Adaptation Capacities in the South Caucasus

10.11.2017 - 14.11.2023

The project will (i) facilitate the development of multi-hazard mapping and risk assessment methodology enabling 1.7 million inhabitants’ reduced exposure towards climate-induced hazards in Georgia; (ii) contribute to the safer livelihoods and infrastructure of 373’800 residents in ten municipalities by developing response and preparedness plans; and (iii) foster evidence-based policymaking and advocacy on climate adaptation, natural hazards and mountain development in the South Caucasus.


Society, culture and memory

Girls and boys with reading corner

01.11.2017 - 31.12.2023

The “Society, culture and memory” programme promotes culture and historical memory in Central America to stimulate processes leading towards more inclusive, less violent societies. Both culture and historical memory have enormous potential to help to create identities and transform societies in the Central American region, which has been characterized by inconclusive peace and democratization processes and the highest rates of violence in the world. With its long presence in the region and its impartial reputation, Switzerland is well positioned to enhance these processes


UNited For Youth Employment in Cambodia

01.09.2017 - 29.02.2020

Youth in Cambodia, in particular new entrants to the labour market, face critical challenges in accessing decent and productive employment opportunities. They have limited access to relevant skills, quality education, entrepreneurship training, information about markets and labour rights. With SDC’s contribution, the UN joint programme will support young women and men to access to (self-) employment opportunities and decent jobs. 


Système de Qualification et d'Accès au Travail (SQUAT), Haïti

01.08.2017 - 31.07.2023

Le programme SQUAT vise à améliorer l’accès au marché de travail et l’augmentation des revenus de 10,000 artisans, maitres et apprentis des filières de la construction dans la région du Grand Sud d’Haïti. Pour y arriver, le programme envisage de renforcer l’offre de formation des professionnels, d’accompagner les organisations de professionnels, de les mettre en réseau et de créer des passerelles entre les formations formelles et informelles. Avec un système d’apprentissage dual reconnu et apprécié par les acteurs du secteur en Haïti, la Suisse est dans une position privilégiée pour accompagner ce processus


Programme Régional d’Education et formation des Populations Pastorales en zones transfrontalières (PREPP)

01.07.2017 - 31.12.2023

L’insécurité ainsi que les tensions entre éleveurs et agriculteurs se sont accrues en Afrique de l’Ouest. Une éducation de base de qualité et formation professionnelle adaptées sont des vecteurs de cohésion sociale et de perspectives économiques, constituant des remparts à la violence, surtout pour les jeunes. Le Programme Régional d’Education et formation des Populations Pastorales (PREPP) agit sur ces enjeux.  Il vise aussi à ce que les politiques nationales et sous régionales intègrent ces dimensions de paix et de durabilité.


Formación técnica profesional

01.05.2017 - 31.10.2023

Vocational skills development is key for improving production and expanding opportunities for employment and self-employment. The project aims to reduce poverty and inequality by enhancing access to the labour market. It seeks to strengthen vocational skills and certify competences with an emphasis on young people and adults, promote the quality of training centres, and the shared responsibility of public/private stakeholders. Strategies cover both the national and the local level.


Skills for Employment Tanzania – SET

Babati, Tanzania

01.03.2017 - 30.06.2022

SET seeks to enhance youth (self) employment by improving the Vocational Skills Development (VSD) system. It will support public and private stakeholders to expand access to quality training that matches the demand from both the economy and youth, in particular women, including young mothers. Key elements from the Swiss VSD model will be emphasized: the coordination between skills providers and private sector, practical training and innovation.


Better training to facilitate the integration of youngsters in rural areas into the labour market

Three young Nigerien men walking through a plantation.

01.01.2017 - 31.03.2023

The SDC is committed to improving the education and vocational training system in Niger. Over 1.5 million young people living in rural areas currently have no access to education or vocational training. Their future ability to enter the labour market depends on good-quality basic education and vocational training tailored to their needs.

Country/region Topic Period Budget
Niger

Dosso and Maradi

Vocational training
Employment & economic development
Education
Vocational training
Employment creation
Primary education

01.01.2017 - 31.03.2023


CHF  15’666’601



Educational facilities for the Internally Displaced and street children

10.12.2016 - 31.12.2019

The internally displaced youth living often as street children in the low-income neighbourhoods of the capital city Islamabad and are deprived from basic education and protection services. The Mashal school educates IDP children from all over the country with a majority from KP and FATA, offers them a protective space, advises / counsels them on cultural, social and legal issues and help them to register under the government system by that laying the basis for future livelihood possibilities.

Object 73 – 84 of 88