Around 57 percent female and 42 percent male of the country's youth community consider government job as the most viable career although only 5 percent of the youth believe their educational qualification will help them secure employment. Many of the educated young people from well-off families want to establish their own businesses while youths with no or less institutional education want to find work abroad to secure better earning, said a study finding on Wednesday.
More women than men were found to be concerned about their children's wellbeing. As much as 34 percent women put their children's well being ahead of any other issues of their life and only 11 percent men are as much concerned about their children.BRAC, BRAC Institute of Governance and Development (BIGD) and BRAC University jointly conducted the Youth Survey 2018 involving 4200 respondents. The findings of the survey were released in an event at a city hotel.
Zahid AhasanRussel, lawmaker and state minister for youth and sports, Dr Md Jafar Uddin,acting secretary to the ministry of youth and sports, Asif Saleh, acting executivedirector of BRAC and Dr Imran Matin, executive director of BIGD participated in a discussion on the study report.
Speakers opined that currently, Bangladesh is enjoying a unique historical period of ‘demographicdividend’ with its working age population (15 to 59 years old) way bigger than the nonworkingage population. At the same time, according to the Commonwealth’sGlobal Youth Development Index, Bangladesh is among the worst performingcountries.
They said although awareness about this issue is rising, there is a shortageof evidence-based information about what the country's young people arethinking and aspiring for. This youth survey is an effort to fill that gap.
The survey focused on the self-identity, aspirations, institutional education, skills,choice and the preparation to enter employment of the respondents. Among therespondents, 7% male and 4% female had higher education and 14% hadvocational training. Of the respondents, only 16% were confident about theirEnglish language and computer skills.
The confidence level among women andless educated respondents were lower than the average. Around 40% hadaccess to internet, although urban spaces offered better access than the ruralones.
Around 90% of the young population studied up to the higher secondary level started earning early. The more educated the respondents are, the later they startearning. Only 5% women with education from 5th grade to upto higher secondarylevel are earning. Around 90% of the respondents who do not study, are notworking to earn or not in any training programme are women.
Around 20% respondents are interested in securing a job abroad, but only one-thirdof them are actively planning to do so. 31% male, compared to only 7%female respondents, are interested to work abroad.
Male respondents enjoy greater liberty regarding choice of their educationalinstitutions, friends and occupation, mobility and spending money than women.
Only 40% women have freedom of mobility, which is just half compared to that ofmen. All respondents are seriously concerned about two issues: gender-basedviolence (early marriage, dowry, sexual harassment and rape) and drugaddiction.
Welcoming the BRAC Youth Survey 2018, state minister Zahid Ahsan Russelsaid, “Such surveys enrich our experience and help identify potential work areas.We are trying to overcome the problems gradually. Women’s participation inwage earning work is increasing.More than 60 percent primary school teachers are Women”.
He said the government has made a decision to set up youth research centresin different regions. These centres will offer assistance to the young peoplebased on their problems, potentials and needs.Acting secretary, Minsitry of Youth and sports Dr Md Jafar Uddin said some of the findings inthis survey may look like problems, but they actually are not. Rather they shouldbe regarded as challenges.
“By overcoming these challenges, the nation will goforward through effective collaboration between the public and private sectors,” he said.Acting executive director of BRAC Asif Saleh said BRAC has long been engaged inthe skill development of young people. “Now we are on to introducing school-basedlearning programmes that will contribute to their future skill development.”