Employment, Social Affairs & Inclusion

News 12/10/2016

The Youth Guarantee in practice: Tina's journey from unemployment to her dream job

When Tina Fonovic left university with both a Bachelor of Law and a Masters in Marketing Communications, she was full of confidence and certain she’d find a job easily. Two years later and that confidence had faded.

Name: Tina Fonovic

Age: 30 (29 when she accessed the programme)

Country: Slovenia, Ljubljana

Youth Guarantee programme(s): Non-formal training, on-the-job training, First Challenge

Current status: PR Assistant at GIG INT music agency

Because I had no previous work experience, I found myself in an endless cycle,” she explains. “I couldn’t get a job because I had no work experience and I couldn’t get work experience because I couldn’t get a job.”

It’s a familiar problem and one that young people are struggling with across the EU. For Tina, the answer lay in the Youth Guarantee scheme. The scheme offers tailored support to young people, giving them the chance to improve their skills, gain work experience and access the job market.

“First I completed two non-formal training courses in German, which helped improve my knowledge of the foreign language that’s most sought after by our employers,” Tina shares. “I then took part in three months of on-the-job training, which provided me with the concrete work experience that employers were looking for.”

Tina’s journey culminated in a job offer that she received through the First Challenge programme. Now a PR Assistant at a music agency, she’s gaining long-term experience in a field she loves. “I’m very lucky to be employed in the field that I studied for and the work is diverse and dynamic,” she says. “I’m learning a lot about PR and social media marketing. It’s definitely increased my confidence and motivation.”

About the programme

In Slovenia, the Youth Guarantee programmes are funded by the European Social Fund, the Youth Employment Initiative (First Challenge only) and the country’s national budget. They are all implemented by the Public Employment Services (PES).

The programme 'First Challenge' consists of a three-month trial period at a workplace. Afterwards, if the employer and the employee mutually agree, the instrument provides for one year of subsidised employment. The instrument encourages employers to hire young people up to and including 29 years of age and it already proved successful in the 2007-2013 period.

Non-formal training courses enable unemployed young people to acquire skills and competences to increase their employability and competitiveness in the labour market. On-the-job training encourages employers to provide training in the workplace for young unemployed people.

Youth unemployment in Slovenia

  • As of June 2016, 15% of young people under 25 in Slovenia were unemployed.
  • In Slovenia, the Youth Guarantee offers young people aged 15-29 employment, continued education, an apprenticeship or a traineeship within four months of becoming unemployed or leaving initial education.

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