Executed between 2010 and 2016, the project for the Brazil-São Tomé e Príncipe Professional Training Center (CFP BRA-STP) resulted from a partnership between the Brazilian Cooperation Agency (ABC) and the National Industrial Apprenticeship Service (SENAI) for the dissemination of SENAI's successful experience in Brazil in terms of vocational training for young people and adults, and the management of vocational schools. Implanted in the capital of São Tomé, the CFP BRA-STP is aligned with the demands of Santander for skilled labor.
In São Tomé and Príncipe, about 50% of the population live below the poverty line and around 15% live in extreme poverty. The tertiary sector (mostly informal) accounts for approximately 60% of GDP and employs 60% of the active population. On the other hand, with a rate of 14%, unemployment particularly affects young people, who correspond to more than 60% of the national population. The country's shortcomings in the area of vocational training are a factor that fuels a vicious circle between poverty and social inequality, disfavoring socioeconomic development. The low qualification of the active population of São Tomé faces the lack of vocational training offer, which could contribute to increase the competitiveness of local companies and generate more job offers. In order to provide skilled labor for the services sector and the nascent industry (mainly in the construction sector), the São Toméan government expressed an interest in establishing a reference vocational training center in which young people and adults could receive training for their qualification for the job market.
The project for the Brazil - São Tomé and Príncipe Vocational Training Center (CFP BRA-STP) aimed to contribute to the socioeconomic development of São Tomé and Príncipe through the provision of vocational education, including for young people in search of their first job. The project included the construction in the city of São Tomé of the building housing the BRP-STP, as well as its technical-pedagogical structuring, in terms of the definition of the training offer, the training of human resources (instructors and managers of the Center) and the provision of didactic materials, furniture and equipment necessary for its operation. In addition to training provided by SENAI instructors in São Tomé and Príncipe, part of the SANTOMEN team that was to work in the Center was trained in technical schools of SENAI Pernambuco, in areas that would be covered in the courses of the CFP BRA-STP. Having granted the land and built a part of the Center's facilities, the São Toméan government actively participated in the definition of the courses to be offered: Civil Construction, Electricity, Metalworking, Welding, Mechanics of automobiles and motorcycles, Food processing and Computer science.
Inaugurated in 2014, the CFP BRA-STP consists of 6 classrooms (for up to 30 students each), a multipurpose room (for up to 60 students), 3 laboratories (computer science, hydraulics and food), 5 workshops , motorcycle mechanics, electricity, construction and welding), an auditorium (for up to 100 people) and a library, as well as administrative and support facilities. In all, the CFP BRA-STP has the capacity to train up to 800 students per day. The results of the project also include:
- the elaboration of the strategic plan of the CFP BRA-STP;
- implementation of the shared management of the CFP BRA-STP (whose responsibility was borne by the São Toméan government); and
- carrying out evaluation and monitoring missions.
Since its inauguration, the CFP BRA-STP has already trained more than 1,250 students. The success of this initiative has led SENAI to be recognized by the United Nations as one of the three most important institutions that promote quality education in the Southern Hemisphere. In addition to São Tomé and Príncipe, SENAI has been (or is still) involved with ABC and local governments in the implementation and / or restructuring of vocational training centers in Angola, Cape Verde, Guatemala, Guinea Bissau, Jamaica, Paraguay, Peru and Timor-Leste.
On the Brazilian side: Brazilian Cooperation Agency (ABC);
On the Santorini side: Ministry of Education, Culture and Science
Implementation agency: National Industrial Learning Service (SENAI)
Marconi Firmino da Silva,