DUO for a JOB, 13 March 2019
Mentoring: the path to social and professional inclusion of young people with a migrant background?
The observation is clear: Belgium has the lowest employment rate in Europe for people born outside the European Union. This figure calls into question the inclusive nature of the Belgian labour market, and of our society in general.
However, one fifth of the Belgian population is of foreign origin. Will we be able to manage this diversity and reap the benefits it could bring?
Thanks to its intergenerational and intercultural mentoring program, DUO for a JOB has been able to gather the testimonies of nearly 1300 young people with a migrant background over the past 5 years. We met young people full of skills, potential and experience with the desire to use them to participate fully in Belgian social and economic life. Through their stories and the follow-up of their duos, we learned to know their individual realities but also saw common barriers that make it difficult for them to access employment. The first objective of this report is therefore to give the floor to these young people, to testify to their reality and to draw attention to their difficulties.
Being part of the journey of all these young people has above all made it possible to confirm that if they benefit from the right springboard, young people with a migrant background can find their way. The second objective of the report is very concretely to highlight the possible solutions: the contributions of individualised support such as mentoring but also the good practices already implemented by other actors.
Accompanying these young people has finally enabled us to see that the transition to a truly inclusive Belgian society can only be made by rethinking existing mechanisms. The report proposes 8 concrete priorities based on DUO for a JOB’s experience.