Skills Development for Youth Employability Project in Nicaragua (PDCE)

In Nicaragua, there are 1.4 million working-age young people between the ages of 18 and 30 years; however, approximately 40% of the economically active youth do not have access to employment or do not earn a salary that meets the basic cost of living. This situation is further aggravated in rural areas and in urban peripheries where access to specialised training is difficult, especially training that facilitates incorporation into the labour market.

The Project

Consolidate processes to improve the quality and relevance of professional training for employability of youth and adults in prioritised sectors and territories.

The Project
At the request of and with financing from the Swiss Agency for Development and Cooperation(SDC), Swisscontact implements the “Skills Development for Youth Employability in Nicaragua” Project in order to contribute to the strengthening of skills among young people in Nicaragua through technical training and the capacity development of institutional providers.  

In its first phase, from January 2013 to March 2017, the project incorporated youth from five provinces of Nicaragua (Masaya, Chinandega, Matagalpa, Jinotega and León) into technical courses conducted by the National Technological Institute (INATEC) and private training centres in order to develop skills for employability and business capacity. In addition, it supported job skills evaluation and certification processes by INATEC and promoted good safe construction practices, including improving the supply of labour in the construction sector.  

In order to consolidate the processes to improve the quality and relevance of professional training for the employability of youth and adults in prioritised sectors and territories, the SDC is implementing, through Swisscontact, the closure phase of the project over 36 months, from April 2017 to March 2020. These activities will be developed mainly in León, Managua, Chinandega and Jinotepe, in collaboration with four INATEC training centres and four private centres. Industry and construction, including good construction practices, are the priority sectors.

The project aims to perfect and consolidate the key topics and processes initiated (curricular transformation, teacher training, certification of workers and linkages between the public and private sectors), ensure the adoption of solutions by the partners to guarantee the continuity of the processes fostered by the programme once its last phase has concluded, and systematise the experience. 


    • 12 490 young people (69% women) strengthened in employability
    • 3171 empirical workers (26% women) in 16 different trades evaluated
    • 3900 young people from 10 private centers (58% female), trained under the component "Promotion Of Youth Employability in Nicaragua ".
    • 1414 managers, teachers and instructors strengthened in their technical and pedagogical skills (45% Women) through the various activities supported by the pdce
    • Update of curricula documents for the Cocoa, Coffee, Textile and Construction sectors
    • 200 actors trained in safe construction (29% women): workers, families and staff from hardware stores
    • 40 families benefited in the piloting of the model of technical assistance of safe construction

    Project partner

    • National Technological Institute (INATEC)
    • Private Training Centres
    • Urban and Rural Housing Institute (INVUR)
    • Construction Chamber
    • Universities

    Project countries

    • Nicaragua

    Project duration

    2017 - 2020


    • SDC

    Working area


    Swiss Foundation for Technical Cooperation
    Hardturmstrasse 123
    CH-8005 Zurich

    Tel. +41 44 454 17 17
    Fax +41 44 454 17 97