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Successful job fair and careers day in The Gambia

The job fair provides career guidance.

Successful job fair and careers day in The Gambia

The first hurdle when looking for a job or training is making contact. This requires an opportunity. And that’s where a job fair is perfect. The Gambian-German Advisory Centre for Jobs, Training and Reintegration (GGAC) cooperated with the Ministry of Trade, Industry, Regional Integration and Employment (MOTIE) and other partners to organise a two-day job fair on the campus of Gambia College in Brikama.

The job fair on the west coast of this African republic was open to students and other interested individuals who are looking for a job. It enabled them to meet employers from the ministries and authorities, but also from private companies and higher education institutions.

A large crowd on the campus of Gambia College in Brikama.

Tips for application and training

A careers day for young women and men who will soon be leaving school was held at the same time as the job fair. Advisors from various training centres and study locations were available for discussions. They answered questions on career entry, gave tips on application documents and explained some training opportunities.

Making contact and exchanging ideas

Kawsu Sillah, the national coordinator and director of the GGAC, pointed out in his welcome speech that the job fair is a good way to access relevant, timely and accurate information about the situation in the job market. “The job fair brings together jobseekers and employers who have vacancies. Jobseekers can also exchange ideas with each other. School leavers and jobseekers may even be inspired to start their own business. This could improve their standard of living and, as entrepreneurs, they could also create job opportunities for other people.”

Fabba Jammeh from the Ministry of Trade, Industry, Regional Integration and Employment wants to combat youth unemployment in The Gambia.

Unemployment among young people in The Gambia is the greatest challenge, stressed Fabba Jammeh, employment director at MOTIE. He explained that the unemployment rate was 41.5 per cent among young people, and 35.2 percent among adults. “In meeting this challenge, the Ministry is very pleased to have organised this job fair in collaboration with our partner the GGAC. Our partnership aims to create 150,000 jobs by 2026, which is fully in line with the national employment policy objectives and the 2022–2026 action plan”, Fabba Jammeh added.

Building networks

The young Gambian Aminata studied Management at the University of The Gambia. Job fairs are good opportunities to find a job: “It’s a great way of building networks. Here I can immediately show my skills to companies. I can also find out what skills employers are looking for at the moment.”

Self-confident and optimistic: Aminata has made contact with a potential employer at the job fair.

Aminata had been given careers advice by the GGAC before contacting companies at the fair. “That advice and the job fair gave me more self-confidence in dealing with potential employers”, she says. She is currently in touch with a bank and is confident that she has good job opportunities there.

Employment contracts secured

Friends Hawa and Nyimasatou are now being trained in the catering sector. They took part in the job fair to find work in the hotel sector. And they were successful. They were able to sign contracts at the fair with a hotel that will employ them both once they've completed their training.

Job opportunities after school

The job fair also provided opportunities for school leavers to get information and application documents for courses at various technical and vocational colleges. Twins Victor and Simon from Brikama recently graduated from school and visited the job fair to find out about training programmes. Victor would like to become a structural draughtsman and Simon would like to study Purchasing and Sales at the GTTI. The specific information they were given is helping with their plans and they feel encouraged.

As of: 08/2022

The job fair network

The job fair was organised by:

Implementation:  Consulting firm Pem Consult GmbH

Participating partners:

MOTIE Department of Labour (DOL) – Gambia Technical Training Institute (GTTI) – University of The Gambia (UTG) – National Association of Cooperative Credit Unions Gambia (NACCUG) – National Enterprise Development Initiative (NEDI) – Gambia Investment and Export Promotion Agency (GIEPA) – Gambia Youth Chamber of Commerce (GYCC) – Global Youth Innovation Network (GYIN) – Startup Incubator Gambia (SIG) – Smart Cleaning – G4S Security – Gamcel – Ocean Bay and Sunset Beach Hotel – Trust Bank

That advice and the job fair gave me more self-confidence in dealing with potential employers.

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