Amideast, Citi Foundation Offer Employability & Entrepreneurship Program in Lebanon

Amideast and the Citi Foundation proudly announce the launching of the “Skills for Success®: Employability and Entrepreneurship Program” in a two-year partnership aimed at providing economic opportunities impacting more than 600 youth in Lebanon.Amideast/Lebanon Country Director Barbara Batlouni with Michel Sawaya, Citi Country Officer for Lebanon

The program, part of the Citi Foundation’s global Pathways to Progress initiative will focus on building a new generation of entrepreneurs and work-ready youth by helping them gain skills needed to succeed in the job market, and for those with entrepreneurial potential, to get their business ideas off the ground to found their own businesses. 

Designed and implemented by Amideast, the program will directly impact 72 unemployed Lebanese technical or university education graduates aged 20-24 who are residing in all areas of Lebanon and who want to either start a business or enhance their skills to find a job. They will receive 275 formal hours of personal development and professional skills training complemented by practical internships, mentoring, and coaching. The quality and relevance of this training will enable them to secure meaningful and sustained employment or self-employment by the end of the program. In the final phase, called Pay-It-Forward, they will be trained to then deliver self-development sessions to youth in their communities.

Amideast is proud to partner with the Citi Foundation to implement this highly needed program." — Amideast/Lebanon Country Director Barbara Shahin Batlouni

“Amideast is proud to partner with the Citi Foundation to implement this highly needed program. Together we will enable 72 youth to start new businesses or find meaningful jobs, and we will also empower them to impact the lives of hundreds of other youth in their communities,” said Barbara Shahin Batlouni, Country Director of Amideast in Lebanon. ‘’Our program participants will develop critical business skills, and will also be trained to teach other youth. They will then pay it forward and provide further skills training to 600 youth, allowing them also to enhance their skills and move towards a better future.”

The “Skills for Success: Employability and Entrepreneurship Program” is part of the Citi Foundation's Pathways to Progress global approach to prepare urban youth to thrive in today's economy. Programs that make up this approach are focused on developing economic opportunities for youth through activities such as entrepreneurship education, engagement in the formal economy through first jobs, and the acquisition of leadership, financial, and workplace skills.

“In February 2017, the Citi Foundation announced the expansion of our philanthropic commitment to empowering urban young people with an additional $100 million investment to impact the lives of 500,000 youth in cities around the world by 2020. To support these efforts, the Citi Foundation is excited to continue this partnership with Amideast/Lebanon to help young people move closer towards their career goals and sustainable futures,” said Michel Sawaya, Citi Country Officer, Lebanon.

The program consists of several phases. The first phase will focus on both personal and business skills: intensive training will enhance English language, computer, workplace readiness, personal development, and soft skills.  In the next phase, participants will focus on either an employability track or an entrepreneurship track, based on their interests and initial business ideas. Participants in the employability track will have internships at an organization based in Lebanon, allowing them to build a stronger resume and gain on-the-job skills and experience.  They will benefit from further training on job search skills to prepare them for entry-level employment. Youth in the entrepreneurship track will be provided intensive training in Amideast’s Start Your Own Business workshop, and receive additional support through mentorship and coaching from business leaders and experts.

Applicants must meet the following criteria:

  • Unemployed Lebanese citizens residing in Lebanon with either a university degree or a vocational degree
  •  Age 20-24
  • Youth from all regions of Lebanon are eligible
  • Either looking for a job or have a business idea and would like to start a business
  • Committed to the program goals and intensive training schedule

Amideast is accepting applications now online until January 8, 2018.  Shortlisted candidates will be required to do a placement test and an interview before finalists are selected.

About Citi Foundation:  The Citi Foundation works to promote economic progress and improve the lives of people in low-income communities around the world. We invest in efforts that increase financial inclusion, catalyze job opportunities for youth, and reimagine approaches to building economically vibrant cities. The Citi Foundation's "More than Philanthropy" approach leverages the enormous expertise of Citi and its people to fulfill our mission and drive thought leadership and innovation. For more information, visit