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Georgian and Kist Youth Work Together for Development and Employment

Over 40 young people from the town of Akhmeta and Pankisi Gorge got together in Tbilisi on April 20, 2017, to talk about professional and personal development, meet motivational speakers and agree about joint community projects.

The event for ethnic Georgian and Kist youth was organized by the non-governmental organization Action Against Hunger, in partnership with the Kakheti Regional Development Foundation (KRDF), with assistance from the European Union (EU) and United Nations Development Programme (UNDP).

The event brought on board prominent guest speakers, including for the First Lady of Georgia, Maka Chichua. Vincent Rey, Head of Cooperation Section of the Delegation of the European Union to Georgia, Natia Natsvlishvili, Assistant Resident Representative of UNDP in Georgia, and Marcella Maxfield, Regional Director of Action Against Hunger, addressed the participants with welcome remarks.

Presentations and interactive sessions were led by Natia Panjikidze, Psychologist and Blogger; Maia Khositashvili, Head of Soft Skills Training Unit from the Training Centre of Justice of Georgia, and Gabriel Meliva, Founder and CEO of the Georgian company Fotorator.

The youth initiative in Akhmeta and Pankisi Gorge aims to promote collaboration between ethnic Georgian and Kist youth and help young people get professional training and find jobs. The project uses an innovative employment methodology “Employment Shuttle” developed by Action Against Hunger in Spain and acknowledged by the European Commission (EC) as one of the best practices in promoting social inclusion and employment.

With the team of 20 people, the Employment Shuttle provides professional coaching and helps people work together for personal and professional development. The five-month programme focuses on a range of skills and qualities that can assist in exploring employment and self-employment opportunities – effective communication, team work, presentation skills, entrepreneurship, project writing, intercultural relations and time management. Two Employment Shuttles in Akhmeta and Pankisi Gorge bring ethnic Georgian and Kist youngsters together twice a month. The initiative kicked off in October 2016 and will come to end in September 2017.