How do vulnerable youth from high-crime areas in El Salvador find jobs in the formal labor market? 

Through innovative workforce and positive youth development programs that target the harsh realities of these youth. In El Salvador, at-risk youth from high-crime municipalities often face barriers to entering the formal economy. Some of these barriers include access to formal education and training, living among high crime and gang-violence, disabilities, access to adequate health care, limited access to transportation, and discrimination based on gender and/or sexual orientation. Despite these challenges, many are eager to realize their talent and potential. The USAID Bridges to Employment Program provides these youth with high-quality training and resources to foster social inclusion and create opportunities for insertion into growing sectors of the formal economy. 

In the Youth Power Video recently produced by Cloudburst, we follow a young man on his journey through USAID’s Bridges to Employment Program. His story highlights the importance of innovative workforce and positive youth development programs that utilize local data and on-the-ground relationships to:

  • Locate vulnerable youth from high-crime areas
  • Conduct labor market studies that uncover key sectors for economic opportunity and growth
  • Develop training centers with up-to-date curricula to promote social inclusion and prepare vulnerable youth for insertion in the formal labor market  

To produce the video Cloudburst leveraged existing video content and conducted focus groups and interviews with participants of USAID’s Bridges to Employment Program. The core objective of this data-driven production process was to highlight USAID’s innovative workforce development program that provides benefits to both vulnerable youth and private-sector partners. 

The resulting interview-style marketing video draws viewers in through immersive and first-hand account footage while also presenting key takeaways for replicating and scaling similar workforce development programs throughout low- and middle-income countries.