Online learning platform offers 100 lessons across 26 core topics, all in Arabic and free of charge
Total of 200,000 people to be trained by INJAZ Al-Arab and MISK Foundation, with a target of 50% female participation
1 in 5 jobs in the Arab world will require digital skills that aren’t widely available today, according to the World Economic Forum. Furthermore, only 38 percent believe their education gives them the skills they need to enter the workforce as per a Bayt report. And in MENA, there are 30 million women educated, connected and of working age, which represents the largest economic opportunity in the region today with women comprising over 50% of university graduates. Yet, only 25% participate in the workforce.
Bearing all this in mind, tech giant Google is out to educate women and youth – especially in Saudi – by providing them with free online and in-person digital training all for free.
‘Maharat min Google’ is a free digital skills-building program in Arabic to help people in MENA find jobs, advance their careers or grow their businesses. Based on a blended learning model, ‘Maharat min Google’ provides free courses, tools, and in-person digital skills training to students, educators, job seekers and businesses.
The online platform — g.co/Maharat — has 100 lessons across 26 core topics in digital marketing that include search engine marketing, social media, video, e-commerce, geo-targeting, and data analytics, among others. Google will provide a certificate upon completion of the full course, which takes about nine hours to complete.
Google.org, Google’s philanthropic arm, has awarded a $1 million grant to INJAZ Al-Arab, a regional nonprofit organization, which will roll out in-person training to 100,000 students across 14 countries in MENA focusing on youth in underprivileged and rural areas.
Google also signed an agreement with Mohammed bin Salman bin Abdulaziz Foundation (MiSK), which will conduct in-person training to more than 100,000 students across Saudi Arabia. Both collaborations with Injaz and MISK will target 50 percent female participation. Google is looking for further local partnerships across the region with governments, universities, private-sector businesses and nonprofits to expand the reach of its ‘Maharat min Google’ program.
“We’re delighted to be bringing ‘Maharat Min Google’ to the Middle East and North Africa — our contribution to the future of the workforce in MENA. This program is free of charge, available in Arabic and accessible on any platform. ‘Maharat Min Google’ draws on our 20-year history of building products, platforms, and services that connect people and businesses, helping them grow and succeed online. We know how valuable digital tools are to MENA’s future and we at Google are proud to be an engine supporting their growth,” said Matt Brittin, Google’s president of business operations across Europe, Middle East and Africa, at the launch.
“At the Misk Foundation, we emphasize the importance of this initiative as it is an extension to our commitment to developing the Saudi youth’s skills, focusing in particular on 21st century skills which will result in a ready-to-market generation as well as prepare the next generation of entrepreneurs and innovator. And since obtaining digital skills is the cornerstone to achieve this, the Misk Foundation partnered on this initiative with Google and the other participating and sponsoring organizations,” added Deema Al Yahya, Adviser and CEO of MiSK Innovation.