Connecting youth to fair and fulfilling employment in Sri Lanka

Advancing Specialized Skills for Economic Transformation (ASSET)

Through ASSET, we are closing the gaps between the human resource needs of growing businesses in Sri Lanka and the youth who are eager to enter the workforce but lack the technical and soft skills required.

Building on our 25+ years of experience sparking youth development in Sri Lanka, ASSET is a five year vocational training initiative, delivered in collaboration with the Sri Lankan Ministry of Skills Development and Vocational Training (MSDVT). Through this partnership, we support the national Skills Sector Development Program – which aims to create a more inclusive skills development system for the country by 2020 – through improving linkages between private sector, government and training providers.

What We're Doing: 
  • Increasing the recognition, value and respect for people working in the trades
  • Increasing awareness for the trades as a viable and respected vocation
  • Supporting business stakeholders’ forums at the regional and national levels, bringing together government, private sector businesses and training organizations to identify key training needs and develop appropriate training strategies
  • Addressing the demand for high quality skills for employment training by using a variety of delivery and certification methods, including training by private, government and civil society providers

This initiative focuses on four high-demand sectors: tourism and hospitality; information and communication technology; construction; and automotive maintenance.

In Sri Lanka, there is widespread reluctance by communities and families to encourage young people to choose careers in the trades and technologies. To address this barrier, we are also developing and implementing engaging social marketing campaigns to help change public perceptions around dignity of labour in the technical vocational sector while fostering greater appreciation for its economic value.


WUSC has been delivering development programs in Sri Lanka since 1989. We started with an income generation and vocational training project which has evolved into initiatives that have improved the skills and well-being of thousands of Sri Lankans across the country.

WUSC has built a record of success in Sri Lanka by respecting the unique needs and opportunities within each community in which we work; delivering quality programming to people from all ethnic groups regardless of age, ability or where they live; and maintaining the highest standards in transparency and accountability with our donors and partners.


Thank you to our donors

ASSET is undertaken with the financial support of the Government of Canada provided through Global Affairs Canada.

Global Affairs Canada