MILWAUKEE, June 20, 2013 /PRNewswire/ -- ManpowerGroup (NYSE: MAN), the world leader in innovative workforce solutions, is committed to empowering refugees across the globe by helping them develop their skills and connecting them with employment as today marks World Refugee Day, a global event launched to recognize the plight faced by approximately 42.5 million refugees, internally displaced and stateless people.
"Men, women and children who are forced to flee their homes are among the most vulnerable people in the world. Once they find safety, refugees face another challenge — starting a new life," said Jeffrey A. Joerres, ManpowerGroup Chairman and CEO. "Work is a critical component of the successful integration of refugees into their new surroundings, and ManpowerGroup provides people from all walks of life with the skills and connections to employment opportunities that help them earn sustainable livelihoods."
ManpowerGroup is involved in programs around the world to foster self-reliance among refugees and help them find meaningful work. For example, with help from ManpowerGroup and its company Manpower Telge Jobbstart (MTJ), more than 700 Iraqi refugees have found work in Sweden. The effort initially began in the town of Sodertalje, where participants spent 18 months studying Swedish culture and received assistance to find work. More than 60 percent eventually moved from welfare to work.The program is now expanding to other towns and will integrate ManpowerGroup training aimed at helping the long-term unemployed. In addition, MTJ serves as an "introduction guide" to refugees in Stockholm, placing more than 58 percent of those served in jobs. MTJ helps build a network of contacts for new immigrants, bridging language and cultural differences between job seekers and potential employers. In the Netherlands, a program will begin in September that will match refugees between the ages of 15 and 18 with study and future career opportunities in the country. The partnership with the Dutch Refugee Council (VluchtelingenWerk) will include workshops, internships, and company and school visits. Since 2007, ManpowerGroup Argentina's "Without Borders" program has provided training and guidance to hundreds of refugees from Senegal, the Ivory Coast, and Colombia. In tandem with local United Nations High Commissioner for Refugees (UNHCR) partners, Migrants and Refugees in Argentina and the Argentinian Catholic Commission for Migrants, the program hosts workshops on job training and the local labor market. It also offers seminars to improve refugees' employability skills, resumes and interviewing techniques. More than 550 refugees have participated in the workshops, and, to date, 85 have found work in positions ranging from hospitality and IT, to sales and call center representatives.