Afghanistan Workforce Development Program (AWDP)

Speeches Shim

  • Duration: 
    April 2012 – June 2018
  • Value: $50 Million


AWDP sought to increase job placements and wages by strengthening the labor pool in major economic areas and addressing the difficulties of high unemployment, scarcity of technically-skilled Afghan labor, and trained business managers.


AWDP used a four-step process to determine what skilled labor is needed and how to create it:

  • Labor market demand assessment: Economic sector assessments determine what skills private sector needs; focus on mid-career/semi-professional level
  • Curriculum development or adaptation: Curricula designed or adapted with Afghan training providers to meet skills for a proven labor market demand from private sector employers
  • Competency-based training: Grants provided to help local organizations deliver training in specific areas demanded by business
  • Employment placement services: Pre-employment training, job-placement services, and follow-up services provided to trainees to help them find jobs
  • AWDP Four-Pillar Model Sustainability and MToT: Provided training in adult learning methodology and instructional design to Private Institutes of Higher Education (PIHE), selected to receive support to commercialize the AWDP skills training and job placement/promotion model. Instructors who successfully complete training receive salary increases.
  • Career Counseling Center (C3): Career Counseling is a critical demand for Afghan youths seeking employment and/or determining a suitable career path. While some PIHEs have recently established C3 facilities, the leadership of these institutions has indicated a high demand for career and employment-related services, technical support, tools, and resources in order to effectively respond to labor market needs, and the needs of the graduating students.


  • Provided 43,873 mid-career/semi-professional employees and job seekers – 36 percent of them women – with competency-based technical and business management skills; training sessions complemented by employability skills training.
  • Assisted 28,790 training program participants – some 36 percent of them women – in finding jobs or earning promotions with salary increases
  • Completed 123 short-term labor market-driven training projects; the projects (awarded through a fixed grants mechanism) implemented by private firms, private universities and NGOs.
  • Carried out a sustainability plan to ensure the program continued beyond USAID funding. As part of this plan, the program accomplished the following:
    • Built the capacity of five PIHEs to operate Career Counseling Centers, which trained 1,758 university graduates (over 33 percent of them female); 807 trainees (over 36 percent female) placed in jobs.
    • Provided Master Training of Trainers (MToT) training to 1,401 master trainers of PIHEs and job seekers (over 36 percent female); 1,060 (over 35 percent female)placed in relevant jobs or promoted in their current positions


Last updated: July 18, 2019

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