Holcim Vietnam, Vietnam: Vocational training for teenagers.

Holcim Vietnam, Vietnam: Vocational training for teenagers

Due to the economic conditions in Vietnam, the percentage of pupils dropping out of school is increasing, especially in the Mekong delta. At the same time, in communities surrounding Holcim Vietnam operations, many young people are unemployed because they lack skills which would meet labour market demand. Within Holcim, helping improve the living conditions for stakeholders is a vital part of the company's Corporate Social Responsibility. Consequently, Holcim Vietnam, in cooperation with the Rach Gia Technical Vocation Training (TVT) College, designed a vocational training program for the children of the company's contractors' employees' who are hired as day labourers, as well as for poor ninth and tenth grade students. The program aims at developing capable human resource for the local labour market.

To contribute to building up a skilled labour force for the future development of local communities surrounding the company's Honc plant in Kien Giang province (Kieng Luong district) and to reducing the local unemployment rate, Holcim Vietnam, in partnership with Rach Gia Vocational Training College, facilitated a pilot 6-month vocational training project. The project included one basic lathing class and one motorbike repairing class for the teenage children of contractors' employees' and also for local poor ninth and tenth grade students of Kien Luong II school.

In order to ensure that the project meets the objective, a need survey was conducted among the four major contractors' employees' families and the poor students mentioned. 34 trainees were selected. A partnership agreement was signed with the Rach Gia Vocational Training College to provide two basic motorbike repairing classes and one lathing class for the trainees including both theory and practical lessons from March to August 2008. Especially poor trainees who are the children of contractors' employees were supported with a monthly stipend so that they could focus on training without being worried about the daily wages to support their families. The training was strictly monitored on a weekly basis by the Rach Gia TVT College and the Holcim CSR team. After six months of training, 91% of the trainees who remained in the course graduated with the vocational training certificates issued by the Kien Giang Department of Labour, Invalids & Social Affairs in August 2008.

21 adolescents are now well trained to meet the demands of employers on the local labour market, and to contribute to the locally limited professional labour force. They have more options to earn a stable income rather than through daily wages, contributing thus to local development. Lessons learnt from this pilot that should be considered for future vocational training projects are:

  • A thorough labour market survey is needed.

  • Broad communication is key.



  • Employment opportunities for the graduates should be explored.