ILO and Erbil Polytechnic University develop Local Skills

ILO and the Erbil Polytechnic University partner to develop local skills in Employment Intensive methods

The International Labour Organization (ILO) and the Erbil Polytechnic University (EPU) have signed a Memorandum of Understanding to develop the skills of technicians and workers in cultural heritage development

The collaboration is part of the on-going project "Support to livelihoods through cultural heritage development" being implemented by ILO and UNESCO, to create decent job opportunities for internally displaced persons, Syrian refugees and host community members. The work focuses on applying Employment Intensive methods to restore and safeguard cultural heritage, with the support of the European Union.

Employment Intensive methods link infrastructure development with employment creation, poverty reduction and local economic and social development. They promote local resource-based approaches, that optimise the use of local resources such as labour, materials, tools and equipment. In addition, these approaches aim to upgrade available skills to improve the employability of workers in cultural heritage to implement conservation activities.

"Developing the skills and capacities of individuals employed in the local construction industry is an important and integrated element in ensuring the sustainability and impact of employment intensive approaches" said Maha Kattaa ILO Country Coordinator in Iraq. "We are pleased to partner with the Erbil Polytechnic University in this important initiative to ensure that more women and men acquire market relevant skills that have the potential to provide long-term and decent employment."

The new partnership will include the development of technical manuals and guidelines to implement a certification programme that supports the recognition of acquired skills for future assignments in the cultural heritage sector. The ILO will build the capacities of trainers from EPU to implement the skills training programmes, and monitor their training activities.

The trainers will go on to implement the training programme with skilled workers and technicians working in historical site conservations in the Kurdistan Region of Iraq. The trained labourers and skilled technicians will constitute a new and unique resource which could be utilized by governmental offices in charge of cultural heritage to rehabilitate the multitude of sites currently registered in the targeted locations.

"There are many construction projects in the Kurdistan Region of Iraq and these construction projects will be risen and increased dramatically in the future. Thus, the Kurdistan market needs employees with skills in the field of urban development and construction," said Dr. Edrees Muhammad Harki, President of EPU.

The training will focus on stone paving, clay bricks building, as well as skills related to tour guides. It will be implemented in coordination with UNESCO, the General Board of Tourism and the General Directorate of Antiquities in the Kurdistan region of Iraq.

The ILO-UNESCO collaboration integrates employment-intensive approaches into the Conservation of Cultural Heritage Programme in Iraq, implemented by UNESCO under the "Support to Livelihoods Through Cultural Heritage Development" project, which is supported by the European Union (EU) Regional Trust Fundin response to the Syria crisis.

For more information, see Creating decent job opportunities through applying Employment Intensive Approaches at Cultural Heritage Conservation activities

(Source: UN)

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