WHY YOUTH DEVELOPMENT PROGRAMMES ARE CRITICAL TO THE SA SUCCESS STORY

Even as South Africa slowly emerges from the suffocating financial grip of the Covid-19 pandemic, recently launched employment statistics proceed to make for grim studying, with almost eight million people unemployed.
South Africa truly recorded improved economic activity in the fourth quarter of 2021, together with an expansion in actual GDP of 1.2% compared to the previous quarter, however unemployment nonetheless reached document levels.
Denice Dumisa
According to the Quarterly Labour Force Survey (QLFS), unemployment in Q4 last yr rose to 35.3% from 34.9% within the earlier quarter. This is the very best level for the explanation that begin of the Quarterly Labour Force Survey in 2008.
Even more alarmingly, the youth unemployment fee stood at a staggering 65.5%.
The newest employment knowledge was launched at the finish of March by Statistics South Africa (Stats SA), and came just days after South Africa managed to attract R1.2 trillion in investment through the fourth South Africa Investment Conference.
Analysts have described the country’s economic system as “producing jobless growth” and imagine that even with upward financial growth within the medium time period, South Africa will nonetheless have an overall unemployment determine of around 30%.
Youth unemployment is a worldwide problem, much more acutely pronounced in South Africa, the place the latest figures are sounding crucial alarm bells.
In late 2021, Stats SA reported that two out of every three young folks beneath the age of 35 in South Africa are unemployed. For the age cohort beneath 25, this rises to 3 out of every 4, or a jarring 75%.
But in and amongst the dire unemployment statistics there are rays of sunshine on the way to begin to successfully address this socio-economic disaster.
Education is key
According to the QLFS report, of the 7,9 million unemployed persons in the fourth quarter of 2021, as many as fifty one,6% had schooling ranges below matric.
This number of unemployed drops the upper the schooling degree. Those with a Matric move represent 38.6% of unemployed and this figure drops considerably for those with different tertiary qualifications (6.9%) and graduates who constitute only 2.4% of South Africa’s formal unemployed.
Astron Energy’s Organisational Capability, Learning and Development Manager Lindiwe Ncongwane said: “It is an often repeated mantra that training is the key to success, however the labour pressure survey actually bears this out.
“Education allied to alternative is the golden key to breaking this cycle of unemployment and to create a future for younger people within the country.”
Astron Energy, which operates South Africa’s second largest community of retail websites including the Caltex model, runs a quantity of Youth Development Programmes covering both tutorial support and office and experiential learning opportunities.
Astron Energy’s Youth Development Programmes embody:
Learnerships
Bursaries
Apprenticeships
In-Service-Training
Graduate Internship Programme
Opportunities
According to Ncongwane, South African Corporates have a key function to play in providing opportunities for graduates and those with different qualifications to assist scale back the variety of unemployed, and also to assist build a era of employable younger folks.
“Investments in training and expertise development, allied to training qualifications, will assist build a workforce that’s multi-skilled and able to adapt to a multitude of tasks and industries,” she said.
เกจแรงดัน of Work report by the World Economic Forum (WEF) found that 50% of all workers will need reskilling by 2025 as adoption of expertise will increase.
The report additionally listed crucial pondering and problem-solving as leading skills employers consider might be wanted over the next 5 years, whereas newer tendencies centre on self-management expertise similar to energetic learning, resilience, stress tolerance and suppleness.
According to Ncongwane, a key part of Astron Energy’s focus is to equip young individuals for the world of work, not only at Astron Energy and the petrochemical trade, however the throughout a variety of disciplines to allow them to be globally aggressive.
The company additionally runs a selection of school-level initiatives within the STEM house, but according to the 4th Industrial Revolution’s give attention to the 3Cs of Communication, Critical pondering and Collaboration, has broadened this to STEAM – Science, Technology, Arts and Maths – in a bid to develop problem-solving and process-based learning.
The way ahead
“As a rustic, we now have to continue investing within the education of our younger folks, particularly within the important skills area, after which create opportunities for them to use these skills and develop in workplace environments,” Ncongwane stated.
“As corporates we want to design a spread of programmes and initiatives to fulfill not solely the wants of the business, but also the way forward for work – and critically the future employment possibilities for our young people.
“If we do this proper, we will start altering the outlook on the employment entrance and make sure that economic development has a tangible influence on the futures and livelihoods of the generations to return.”
In the Youth Development house, Astron Energy runs the following programmes:
Learnerships
eight X Learnerships in chemical operations at the Astron Energy refinery in Milnerton, Cape Town
20 X Learnerships in Sales and New Venture Creation at Johannesburg places of work
The Learnerships run from 1 Oct 2021 – 30 Sep 2022
Bursaries
Astron Energy runs a full Bursary programme which covers both under graduate and submit graduate studies, from 1st yr to Masters Level college students.
The bursaries embody tuition charges, lodging, books, meals, money allowances and vacation work in the form of internship/in-service-training within the company’s operations.
The programme started in 2020 and to date over 440 students have been funded.
There are presently 196 scholar bursars and 15 worker bursars as part of this programme. A complete of 26 worker kids are part of the bursary programme for 2022.
The bursary covers a variety of research fields this yr including:
BSc: Chemical Engineering/ BSc: Industrial Engineering/ BSC: Property Studies/ Masters: Industrial Psychology/ Honours: Financial Accounting/ Bcom: Economics/ BSc: Electrical Engineering/ Bcom/BA: Human Resources Management/ Bcom: Information Technology/ Bcom: Internal Auditing/ Bcom: Logistics/ Occupational Health and Safety/ Bcom: Supply Chain/ BSc: Analytical Chemistry.
Astron Energy additionally presents successful bursars the opportunity to be a half of the Astron Energy Graduate Training programme.
Apprenticeships
Astron Energy provides 24-month Apprenticeships in Electrical and Mechanical Engineering and Instrumentation at the refinery in Cape Town. At present, the corporate has six apprenticeships in its manufacturing division.
Graduate Programme
The Graduate Internship Programme is run according to the varied disciplines required by the business and runs for a interval of between 18-24 months. The present consumption of Graduate interns is about to end on 31 December 2022.
Infographic
Astron Energy presently has 77 members in its Learnership, Apprenticeship and Graduate Internship programmes:
LogisticsGraduate Internship13
CFOGraduate Internship11
RetailGraduate Internship5
HRGraduate Internship3
HRLearnership20
C & IGraduate Internship2
CEOGraduate Internship2
ManufacturingGraduate Internship1
STOGraduate Internship3
Strategy Graduate Internship2
SHEQGraduate Internship1
ManufacturingApprentice6
ManufacturingChemical Operations Learnership8
Total77
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