In 2018 the Momentum Metropolitan Foundation (The Foundation), mobilised both by the need to urgently address this shocking statistic and its commitment to supporting the NDP and the UN SDGs, concentrated its efforts on making a positive, measurable difference to youth unemployment in South Africa by focusing on the most vulnerable 16 to 25 year-old segment.
This was to be achieved through an aggressive, proactive and creative youth employment strategy that would: • equip young people to access, maintain and further develop their income-earning opportunities • develop future potential clients • develop future talent for both the financial and other sectors of the economy.
We recognise that it will take time to make a meaningful difference to the number of young people not in employment, education or training and that it will take time for our CSI team to develop deep critical insights into this issue and use this insight for greater social and business impact. We have therefore committed to partnership agreements of between three and five years. However, we continually monitor and review the effectiveness of our partnerships.
The research the Foundation commissioned to help it understand the complex problem of youth unemployment indicated that in order to achieve our objective we need to adopt a holistic approach to youth development.
The Foundation also laid down parameters designed to ensure a focused approach to delivering actual sustainable jobs or income generating activities for young people:
- projects enabling young people to take their place in the digital economy were to be balanced with vocational skills training that would provide quick access to an income and jobs for vulnerable young people and their families
- training initiatives must address the needs of local industry and entrepreneurship programmes should focus on filling gaps in the market
- to enable young people to sustain the socio-economic gains they make through their participation in our youth employment programmes financial literacy training and money management is to be an integral part of their training
- social innovation and entrepreneurship.
After a young person obtains his or her first entry level job we continue to provide support that will help them to continue growing and increasing their earnings. Through the information communication technology (ICT) programme young people, by learning programming and coding skills that are in short supply, can earn between R8 000 and 10 000 a month.