Press Release

From graduation to employment: celebrating the graduates of WFP's Jousour programme in Iraq

26 November 2023

BAGHDAD – The United Nations World Food Programme (WFP) congratulates 753 graduates of the WFP Jousour programme which aims to enhance the employability of internally displaced and vulnerable Iraqis as well as Syrian refugees by providing them with digital and English language skills.

The programme is a joint initiative between WFP and the University of Sulaymaniyah, the Erbil Polytechnic University, the Dohuk Polytechnic University, and Mercy Hands in Anbar. The trainees completed a comprehensive training that covered IT and English language skills, as well as life skills, entrepreneurship, and financial inclusion.

They also participated in job fairs where they interacted with local employers and non-profit organizations and explored career opportunities in various sectors.

The Jousour programme has already helped 20 graduates become freelancers and secured 135 job and internship opportunities for others through its partners. The programme also received official recognition from the Iraqi Ministry of Higher Education and Scientific Research (MoHESR) and was approved for national rollout through universities across Iraq.

"WFP is proud to support these talented young men and women who have demonstrated remarkable commitment and resilience throughout the programme,” said WFP Country Director and Representative in Iraq Ally-Raza Qureshi. “WFP believes that empowering youth is essential for building a brighter future for Iraq.”

The Jousour programme, formerly known as EMPACT, was launched in 2019 with generous support from the German Federal Ministry of Economic Cooperation and Development (BMZ). Since then, it has trained over 9,700 people across Iraq.

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The United Nations World Food Programme is the world’s largest humanitarian organization, saving lives in emergencies and using food assistance to build a pathway to peace, stability and prosperity for people recovering from conflict, disasters and the impact of climate change.

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