The Ministry of Agriculture will rehabilitate its agricultural technical and vocational schools with funding from the Dutch government and in partnership with UNICEF and FAO – Lebanon

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Beirut, September 3, 2019 – The Ministry of Agriculture today announced, in partnership with UNICEF, the launch of rehabilitation works for its seven agricultural technical and vocational schools. Funded by the Dutch government, the main objective of the rehabilitation is to provide a safe and healthy learning environment for students enrolled in these seven schools as part of the development of the agricultural technical and vocational education system in Lebanon.

The launch ceremony was led by the Minister of Agriculture Dr. Hassan Lakis and in the presence of the Ambassador of the Netherlands HE. Mr. Jan Waltmans, Violet Speek-Warnery, Deputy Representative of UNICEF, Maurice Saade, Representative of FAO, Principles and Professors of the Ministry of Agriculture, and Representative of NGOs and Municipalities.

In his speech, the Minister of Agriculture insisted on the importance of supporting and activating agricultural education, and the development of agricultural technical schools, affirming that: “Agricultural education is the cornerstone in the training of technical frameworks for the development of the agricultural sector, by improving the level of education, performance and preparation of graduate students, which requires a continuous review of educational institutions, to consolidate the policies and strategies of the ministry, aimed at develop this sector and meet the needs of the labor market for skilled labour.

The Dutch Ambassador, Mr. Jan Waltmans, said: “The Netherlands supports economic development in Lebanon in different ways. In agriculture, and with our support, Lebanon now exports potatoes to the EU. Through the Agrytech program, we encourage bright young Lebanese to come up with innovative solutions for the agriculture and food processing sector and create start-ups. We rely on the national TVET strategy to improve the quality of technical education. The mismatch between the skills acquired through education and the skills required in the labor market must be bridged. These initiatives and programs would yield better results if the Lebanese private sector played a more proactive role in providing internships and jobs to students.”

“Schools rehabilitated with improved building and safety standards will provide students with more appropriate teaching and learning environments, including safer infrastructure, adequate equipment and teaching materials,” said Violet Speek-Warnery, UNICEF Deputy Representative in Lebanon.

In turn, the FAO Representative in Lebanon, Dr. Maurice Saadeh, spoke about the project saying: “This activity is part of the project “Upgrading the agricultural technical education system in Lebanon”, implemented by the Food and Agriculture Organization of the United Nations (FAO) with funding from the Dutch government and in cooperation with key partners such as UNICEF and the ILO. It aims to provide high quality agricultural technical training to young men and women in Lebanon and to meet current labor market needs.”

Seven agricultural TVET schools will benefit from Dutch government funds to ensure a better learning environment for more than 2,000 adolescents and young people in all schools’ education and training programmes. The grant will also enable UNICEF, in collaboration with the Ministry of Agriculture, to improve hygiene, health and safety standards in these schools while implementing accessibility standards for adolescents and young people with special needs, if applicable.

The seven agricultural schools that will be rehabilitated are: Khiyam Agricultural School, Al-Nabatiyeh Agricultural School, Baakleen Agricultural School, Rizk Agricultural School, Al-Batroun Agricultural School and Al-Abdeh Agricultural School.

About UNICEF

UNICEF promotes the rights and well-being of every child, in everything we do. Together with our partners, we work in 190 countries and territories to translate this commitment into practical action, focusing special efforts to reach the most vulnerable and excluded children, for the benefit of all children, everywhere.

For more information about UNICEF and its work for children, visit www.unicef.org.

Media Contacts

Blanche Baz
Communications Specialist
United Nations Children’s Fund Lebanon
Tel: 00961 1 429 288
Email: [email protected]

Amira Alameddine
Communication Manager
United Nations Children’s Fund Lebanon
Tel: 00961 3 922 332
Email: [email protected]

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