Global Reach: Grantee Partners



The Philippines has a 5-7% adult unemployment rate; for youth 15 to 24 years old, the unemployment rate stood at 11.8% in August 2022. The irony is that 65% of local companies report they find mainly employees with inadequate interpersonal and communication skills. Human skills such as interpersonal or communication skills, but also critical thinking, self-leadership, growth mindset, are generally underdeveloped, but they are critical for employability. The 2018 PISA study showed that only 31% of Filipino students believed in a “growth mindset”, against a global average of 63%. In an increasingly digital and dynamic labour market, all (young) people, regardless of sector or career, will benefit from gaining a set of fundamental skills enabling them to adapt to new working styles, to bring value beyond what machines can do to and to work in an increasingly digital environment. Under the devastating impact of COVID-19, the challenges and barriers to make the transition to decent work especially for marginalized young people grew and grow. They are more likely to be unemployed at working age and live below the poverty line. They are at greater risk of insufficient social protection and see their right to decent work denied


BagoSphere was founded in 2012 by three co-founders teaching English and IT lessons in Bago City to support unemployed, low-income youth find in-demand employment in the BPO industry. BagoSphere describes itself as a Human Skills School. Having trained 7,000 youth and adults since 2013, they focus on human skills as the missing link to employability: In an increasingly digital and dynamic labour market, all, regardless of a sector or career, will benefit from a set of fundamental skills. Their program focuses and teaches skills that employers need while empowering (young) people to break-through self-limiting beliefs; and helping them attain today’s most important digital and soft skills.

Current Grant:

EMpower's 1st grant to BagoSphere will equip 70 marginalised youth 18-24 years old with professional, digital and life skills for decent employment in the BPO sector via a 4-months training program certified by Ateneo Center for Educational Development (ACED), a unit inside Ateneo de Manila, a top university in the Philippines. Additionally, EMpower’s funding will allow BagoSphere to scale their BPO Jobseekers Training Hub to reach more (young) people and increase the quality and richness of online career development offers. With EMpower’s flexible funding support, BagoSphere aims to strengthen its HR (development of an internal leadership development program) and to boost financial compliance.

You can support our work with BagoSphere and our other grantee partners.

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