Silatech is an innovative social enterprise that supports job creation and employability for young people (aged 18-30). Silatech was established in 2008 through a $100 million endowment by Her Highness Sheikha Moza bint Nasser Al Misned, the wife of the then Emir of Qatar, and mother of the new Emir, Sheikh Tamim bin Hamad Al Thani. Silatech promotes large-scale job creation, entrepreneurship and access to capital and markets for young people, starting first in the Arab world, where the highest rate of youth unemployment currently exists.
Silatech’s projects aim to foster close cooperation between governments, the private sector, academia and civil society. Partnerships with the governments of recipient countries are forged to promote policy reforms and sustainable change in vocational education, enterprise development and the engagement of youth in civil society. Silatech works on initiatives that are developing curricula for vocational training in the hospitality and construction sectors in Yemen, Morocco and Tunisia; providing support to youth-inclusive services for microfinance institutions; developing web- and mobile phone-based technology to provide information on available jobs and employability programmes in the region; web-based career guidance and counselling in cooperation with Microsoft Egypt; policy reform recommendations and training for NGOs and social enterprises in M&E. In Qatar, Silatech and the Qatar Development Bank set up and support the Bedaya Centre for youth, which provides career guidance and entrepreneurship education.