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Today’s Youth, Tomorrow’s Leaders


Today’s Youth, Tomorrow’s Leaders

Kelly Salance

Finding a job is a challenging process, particularly if you are a young adult entering the workforce for the first time. It can be difficult to understand where to start your search, how to apply, and what are the best ways to market yourself. The challenge becomes increasingly difficult if you are in a place like Brazil, where the unemployment rate is alarmingly high for young people. In 2017, the estimated youth unemployment rate in Brazil was 30.5%. With a staggering 6.6 million young people (aged 18 -24) not in school or at work, what can be done?

Enter Instituto da Oportunidade Social (IOS) — a non-profit in São Paulo with a mission to seek, support and train young people (15-29 years old) who have less access to job opportunities. Founded in 1998, IOS has always put young people at the center of their mission. Their core objective is to bring technological access to low income youth through professional training programs. From business management and entrepreneurship trainings, to technical IT software courses, IOS offers a variety of classes and workshops to prepare young people to enter the workforce.

Despite 2017 being economically difficult for young adults in Brazil, IOS saw an 18% increase in their youth entering the job market. In all, 1,016 IOS students became employed. Moreover, of the students who graduated from IOS in 2017, at least 35% are working and 15% enrolled in higher education. These numbers indicate that over half of IOS trainees are in better social and economic opportunities after completing their time at IOS.

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When a young person arrives at IOS, they do more than just attend trainings. They work to gain knowledge and the skill set to own their destiny. IOS is preparing their students for formal employment in a competitive job market and showing how to address the youth unemployment challenge to achieve lasting change.

Work in Brazil? Partner with IOS and learn how to hire a student in your office here.

Learn more about Zendesk’s partnership with IOS here.