Students have been trained by local experts in kitchen skills, bartending and housekeeping, so they’re ready for work in high-quality hotels across the island. But that’s not all. They’ve also been given life coaching, with a focus on gender empowerment, work safety, sexual and reproductive health, and financial know-how.
The project is aimed at 17 to 24-year-olds. Young mothers with children have been able to join the TUI Academy, too, as childcare is provided during the training period. This is invaluable in the Dominican Republic, where youth unemployment has hit a staggering 35%, and the teenage pregnancy rate is double the worldwide average.
After the Class of 2018 graduated from the TUI Academy, each student was given a six month internship at Blue Diamond Resorts across Punta Cana. This is an opportunity that wouldn’t have been an option for many of the students prior to their training. Many of them lack formal qualifications and have a poor command of the English language.
The students we interviewed all did their internships at the CHIC by Royalton in Uvero Alto, which lines up ultra-modern décor, DJ-led pool parties, and a pick of places to eat. Check it out…
We asked the students to tell us about their experience of the TUI Academy…
Adriana, aged 21, has been training in housekeeping. She told us, ‘Before I started at the TUI Academy, I struggled to find a job. I left school to care for my two children, aged five and three, and had to just stay at home. Now I have a purpose, I have a schedule and I’m making a better life for my family.’
Francier, aged 20, chose bartending as his skill. He told us, ‘I applied for the TUI Academy as I saw it as an opportunity to build a career and make a better future for myself and my family. My mother was a teenager when she had me and has always worked so hard to support us. Now I want to give something back.’
Maria Teresa, aged 21, is working towards becoming a housekeeper. She told us, ‘The life coaching part of the TUI Academy taught me how to challenge my fears and overcome personal problems. I was in a bad situation before I started my training, with limited prospects for the future. Now I feel so much more positive.’
Lewis, aged 17, has been learning bartending skills. ‘He told us, I want to progress my career in tourism. I’ll need to go to university first, but one day I’d love to be the General Manager of a hotel. The opportunity the TUI Academy has given me is the best path I could’ve taken to achieve my dreams.’
After the success of the Class of 2018, the TUI Academy began recruiting for their second intake of students, to continue the good work.
Find out about the TUI Care Foundation’s newest project with Plan International – they’ve taken the academy across continents to open a new TUI Academy in Vietnam.
Fancy checking out the hotels the students will be working in? Take a look at our holidays to the Dominican Republic.
Plus, find out which is the best Caribbean island for you and discover our excursions with the feel-good factor.
Pssst. Head to the Discover homepage for our latest articles.
Author: Danielle Penny
The Riu Palace Bavaro plays a winning hand with its beachfront spot and impressive range of pools and restaurants.
A beautiful white-sand beach, designer interiors and a gourmet dining scene are the calling cards at TUI SENSATORI Resort Punta Cana.
Royalton CHIC Punta Cana Resort & Spa in Uvero Alto lines up ultra-modern décor, DJ-led pool parties, and a pick of places to eat.
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