MAGA Engineering and the U.S. Agency for International Development (USAID) Youth Employment and Business Startup Project – YouLead, have cemented their partnership under a Memorandum of Understanding (MoU) to work to better outcomes and opportunities for Sri Lankan youth. MAGA and YouLead have been working together since September 2019, with a focus on developing skills and creating better job opportunities for young people in the construction industry. Active until May 2024, the MoU was signed by MAGA President and CEO, Mr. MG Kularatne, and YouLead Project Director, Mr. Charles Conconi.
Through a comprehensive Train-the-Trainer (ToT) program organized by YouLead, more than 60 specialist MAGA trainers have been empowered and up-skilled to better train young people in the construction and engineering sector. Through continuous training and competences-construction carried out at project sites across the island, these experienced MAGA training staff have helped over 1,500 young people entering the construction industry gain invaluable technical expertise and work experience. The two organizations will continue to collaborate on the design, development and effective delivery of training programs focused on the construction industry, including technical training, project management skills building and skills development. supervision to support the development of young people across Sri Lanka.
Commenting on the signing of the Memorandum of Understanding, the President and MAGA Managing Director, Mr. MG Kularatne said, “Since its inception, MAGA has believed in empowering and supporting young Sri Lankans to learn employable skills which are key to unlocking opportunities and building a future. better for all. Therefore, we are proud to continue our partnership with USAID’s YouLead project in which we have found a like-minded partner to support, train and create opportunities for young people. On behalf of the construction industry, we would like to thank the YouLead team for their initiative and contribution in this space.”
Speaking about YouLead’s goal of improving the job skills and employability of young Sri Lankans, YouLead Project Director Charles Conconi said, “Thanks to USAID, we are pleased to have the opportunity to help MAGA build a larger Sri Lankan workforce, skilled in the latest builds. practices and technologies. Partnering with industry leaders such as MAGA to train their own trainers allows us to help structure a training experience closely aligned with the needs of this growing industry. It also ensures that the extra talent and capacity stays in Sri Lanka to develop youth skills and good jobs long into the future.
YouLead is an $18 million program supported by USAID, the Swiss Agency for Development and Cooperation (SDC), and the European Union and implemented by International Executive Service Corps (IESC). It strives to improve technical and vocational education and training, create a more skilled workforce and connect young people to more productive careers by undertaking activities to support and strengthen students, teachers , institutions and entrepreneurs.
Sri Lanka’s leading construction company, MAGA Engineering, is the country’s largest construction sector employer. As a training institute registered with the Higher and Vocational Education Commission (TVEC), MAGA continues to work with the Ministry of Skills Development and Vocational Training and other public and private partners to contribute to youth development in Sri Lanka. MAGA’s contribution to professional training in the workplace has been recognized by several national awards for excellence in professional training.
Pictured at the start of the MAGA – YouLead partnership in 2019, standing from left to right: YouLead Partnerships Manager, Mr. Sharada Weerwardana; YouLead Director of Partnerships, Ms. Vindya Silva; Director of the YouLead project, Mr. Charles Conconi; President and Managing Director of MAGA, MMG Kularatne; MAGA Director of Finance and Planning, Mr. Mega Kularatne