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FOCUS - Support for the professional integration of youth into the labor market




2018 - 2019

Cooperation partners:

Soroca District Council, Soroca City Hall, Territorial Employment Agency, 3 local colleges, 1 VET school

Youth from Soroca District

300’619 €

Local contribution:
77’880 €

The FOCUS project is implemented by the Youth Resource Center DACIA (YRC DACIA), which aims to provide youth-friendly services and measures designed to empower young people, to contribute to youth participation in the decision-making process through National Youth Forum and to contribute to the development of local and national youth policies. Visit their website to find more about YRC DACIA and their projects.

Project Summary:

Many young people in Moldova, especially graduates from vocational schools and people with no secondary and/or no professional training, lack employability skills and knowledge about how to manage their transition from education to work. As a result, many become socially and economically marginalized and excluded. The FOCUS project provides a range of support especially to the young people from disadvantaged backgrounds designed to empower them to become more employable and learn important life skillsThe current phase builds on and deepens the impact of the previous activity of YRC DACIA. In the first phase of the named project, the centre offered life and digital skills courses, assisted 150 young people to look and apply for a job. Out of 150 beneficiaries 18 were employed. 

The project adopts a career guidance approach that tailors the support to the individual’s personal needs and occupational interests. The support programme encompasses the assistance of young people with career choice, job search, hiring process and, if needed, with job mediation and counselling to increase the job retention.

Project Outcome:

To empower young people from disadvantaged backgrounds from Soroca with a set of competitive life and employability skills (including digital skills).

Expected Outputs:


  • Soroca has a strong institutionalized programme and measures for careers guidance and for employment aimed at young people in general and at risk youth in particular. The project intends to complement the efforts of other actors engaged in employment and labour market to ensure that the programme yields tangible results at different levels.

  • A comprehensive package of support is developed to provide E-training/guidance/mentoring resources for young people in the process of integration into the labour market.

  • An offer of employment mediation services, counselling and monitoring of beneficiaries is developed with the aim of increasing job retention.

  • Professional internships for young graduates are tried and lobbied at governmental level to develop the necessary mechanisms to apply the approach on the national scale.

Success stories


Cazac Anna

Anna is from Racovăţ, Soroca district. She graduated from the Art College, Chișinău, where she completed a hairdresser programme. Having graduated from the college, she returned to Soroca to search for a job. She went directly to potential employers to look for a job.

”The key issue the young people face when looking for a job is the lack of working experience. The potential employers usually seek qualified workers who have been working for some time and know the job very well. The employers do not really want to waste their time on assisting the young graduates.”  

Luckily, she found a job pretty quickly, filling in for a staff member on maternal leave. Anne is happy with the working conditions and very much enjoys what she is doing. In addition, she gets the perk of meeting new people and communicating with the clients.

”When my clients leave the salon satisfied and happy, I feel even more accomplished. ”    

To be able to start her job, Anna needed to purchase a comprehensive set of tools and equipment to fulfil the jobs requirements. She applied for a professional scholarship provided as part of the FOCUS project. As a result, she was able to get the necessary equipment to start her job.


Botnea Cristina

Cristina is originally from Cerlina, Soroca district. She is a student at the College of Arts from Soroca. She decided to get a part-time job to cover some of the expenses. Having no work experience and being in need for a job with flexible hours, she was not sure neither how to proceed with the task nor whether she holds the required sets of competences. In her free time, Cristina is a volunteer at the Youth Resource Center DACIA where she participates in different events. That is where she found about the careers guidance services the Centre provides.

The YRC DACIA team offered her careers guidance on finding job vacancies and existent employment procedures. To increase her chances to get a job, Cristina also applied for a short internship at the Centre, where she worked for three weeks. Cristina managed to secure a job at the local restaurant as a waitress.

”I adjusted quite easily to the new team, getting well with my colleagues. My duties include taking food and beverage orders and serve them to the clients efficiently and politely. I enjoy my job. It is important to perform well as the employer has quite high expectations.”    

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