Market Aligned Skill Training (MAST) program, Jammu & Kashmir- an Update

Project Period: 1st December 2015 to 31st May 2017

J&K MAST project, a joint initiative of AMAN Public Charitable Trust, New Delhi, The American India Foundation Trust, India and American India Foundation, United States aimed to explore various livelihood possibilities for school dropout youths in the region. The project targeted at providing suitable industrial training to interested youths who could eventually get employment in local industries. Simultaneously, the project aimed to provide required counseling and soft skills training to the youths who have been brought up in a hostile environment arising out of conflict situations.

MAST centre, ITI Pattan team with due support from technical education board and other important state administrative bodies identified potential youths for imparting skill based trainings with a target to groom them to enhance their professional as well as personal skills and creating socially responsible youths. The project plan focused on creating sustainable livelihood opportunities for around 180 – 200 youths through skilled based trainings (mechanics, electrical, plumbing, carpenter, cutting and tailoring etc.) Thereby ensuring dignified lives, improved confidence and raised self- esteem through ethical absorption of skilled youths with suitable employers. The youths enrolled at MAST Centre were under the age group of 16 to 30 years

The project was successful in motivating several school dropout youths in taking up skill training courses. Some graduate youths are now part time practicing as plumber and electrician. The government’s ITI centre at Pattan block, district Baramulla in collaboration with the Rashtriya Rifle 29 and AMAN Trust, New Delhi decided to continue offering some short-term training courses for interested youth.