Skills apprenticeship gives jobless chance to generate income

An apprentice under the PPPK initiative working on a songkok at Songkok Masood Boutique Muar, Johor.

THE Johor Craft Complex has selected 13 locals for its Skills Apprenticeship Development Programme (PPPK) as part of initiatives to produce more highly skilled craftspeople in the state.

Its director Mohd Ridzwan Misran said the participants would be placed at six craft companies for six months until March next year.

“The participants are youths who have been selected by the Malaysian Handicraft Development Corporation to be part of a job creation initiative that caters to those who are unemployed due to the Covid-19 pandemic.

“We hope this will help them get back on their feet, as they can generate an income from their craft work,” he told StarMetro.

Mohd Ridzwan said PPPK also aimed to ensure that these craftspeople would be able to create a sustainable market for their products.

“The participants will undergo training in wood craftsmanship, leather crafts, songkok tailoring and pineapple fibre crafts.

“At the end of the programme, not only will we produce highly skilled craftspeople but also help boost the production of the companies that they join,” he said.

Mohd Ridzwan added that upon completing the six-month programme, the participants would be required to continue working at the companies for at least another year, either part-time or full-time.

Songkok Masood Boutique Muar owner Zahedy Zakariah said the PPPK initiative was timely in helping both industry players and also the jobless.

“The participants will basically be taught from scratch how to make songkok and how they are weaved on the machine.

“They will be given a different module every week until they are confident enough to start on their own,” he said, adding that there were three participants under his care.Meanwhile, Teras Bumi (woodcraft) director Mohd Hasri Hassan said the programme was a positive start to producing more highly skilled wood craftspeople in Johor.

“Among the products that my company produces are gazebos, which involve detailed measurement and woodwork skills.

“It’s a lot of work, but I believe the apprentices will make it.

“At the end of this programme, I hope they can produce their own products,” he added.

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