YCI Country Information
The YCI model was born in Thailand, where the Youth Career Development Programme (its operating name in the country), was first set up in 1995. Starting in Bangkok, the programme was a dynamic partnership between the Pan Pacific Hotel Group and UNICEF Thailand. Although the initial intention was to serve as a strategic prevention measure against potential exploitation of adolescent women, young men were later accepted onto the programme too. YCI Thailand re-launched in May 2017, at Soneva Kiri.
The self-managed programme was championed by Mr. Jorely Mathew, Area Director Human Resource, who previously coordinated YCI at Fairmont Jaipur, India, and Phawin Phiophang, Training Manager at Soneva Kiri. To date, the programmme has completed the 2nd cohort and 9 students have graduated from the programme with the support of Plan International Thailand and their local partner Labour Rights Promotion Network in recruitment and monitoring. Soneva Kiri is located on Koh Kood, Thailand’s largest and least populated island. A one hour flight from Bangkok, the hotel brings together environmental sustainability and rich Thai culture, making it an exciting learning environment for YCI students.
YCI Thailand is now expanding to Bangkok with the participation of three hotel partners, InterContinental Bangkok, Holiday Inn Bangkok and Hyatt Erawan Bangkok. Six students are participating the training in IHG hotels. With the support of Hyatt Community Grant another six youths will have an opportunity to join the YCI programme with Hyatt hotel in 2019.