KOTA KINABALU August 13, 2012: There are employment opportunities for youths in the spa industry in view of the booming tourism industry here.
Datuk Suzannah Liaw, permanent secretary to the Ministry of Youth and Sports Sabah, said up to 60 per cent of the workers at spa centres here were foreigners.
“Our people can do the job, it’s just a matter of training.
“The people who come in here (foreign employees), they may not have the credentials,” she said when officiating at the graduation ceremony of 21 trainees at Jari Jari Training Academy here yesterday.
The training was implemented under the 1Azam programme of the Ministry of Youth and Sports Sabah. The 21 trainees underwent two months of intensive training in spa and wellness therapy.
With the spa training programmes offered by local spas here, Liaw said it would help change people’s perception of the spa industry.
She added that the government aimed to produce 1,500 local therapists to replace foreign therapists by the end of 2013.
“By next year we will stop using foreign therapists and there will be so much opportunity for our own youths.”
Liaw added that working as spa therapists is not only limited to Sabah. They can also work overseas in countries such as Singapore, Philippines, Indonesia, Macau and Maldives.
As for the 1Azam programme for spa courses, Liaw said there were 120 places to apply for this year, and urged more youths to take up the opportunity.
She said the 1Azam programme aimed to provide employment and business opportunities for the hardcore poor and poor to raise their income and above the poverty line.
Liaw added the Ministry of Youth and Sports Sabah had begun implementing 1Azam programmes since last year, while the programme is funded by the Federal Government.
“This will enable the students to have a better future, and to raise their standard of living or allow them to set up their mobile business.”
Meanwhile, Datin Jeanette Tambakau, director of Jari Jari Sdn Bhd, said it was the first 1Azam programme under the Ministry of Youth and Sports Sabah.
Upon completion of the programme, she said the participants would obtain Malaysian Skills Certificate I (SKM I).