Muyters reveals projects to put 6,000 youngsters to work


Seventeen new projects announced by the Flemish labour minister will see young people given personalised employment plans featuring formal training and work placements

“The right to support”

Flemish labour minister Philippe Muyters has announced 17 new projects designed to propel young people with no academic qualifications into work. The latest round of Wij! projects should provide 6,242 young people with employment.

The Wij! (We!) system (which stands for Werkinleving voor Jongeren, or work immersion for young people) involves the creation of a tailor-made employment plan. Over a year to 18 months, the system offers formal training, short periods of working with businesses and other measures designed to increase the young person’s skills.

Muyters’ labour department is funding 60% of the €10.8 million total cost. The European Social Fund has contributed €2.9 million.

The new round is aimed at more than 6,000 young people, twice as many as were covered in the previous round. “The previous round was limited to the 13 central towns and cities, but this time we’re broadening out to cover all of Flanders,” Muyters explained. “It’s not logical to leave a successful instrument like this with blind spots. Every young person has the right to support.”

Muyters’ other portfolio, sport, is also included as an aspect of the Wij! project. “Sport is more than just movement,” he said. “Sport teaches you things that come in handy in a job. You learn about winning and losing, you learn discipline, arriving on time and leaving with permission. You learn about co-operation, looking at the longer term and so much more. I’m convinced that through sport, young people can pick up skills that make them stronger on the job market.”

Photo: Ingimage