Massive investment in YES initiative
Responding to President Cyril Ramaphosa's “Thuma Mina” initiative, the Volvo Group Southern Africa is introducing a Youth Employment Initiative.The Swedish automobile giant hopes that the programme which was unveiled in May at its assembly plant in Durban, will help address South Africa's high unemployment rate among the youth.
President of Volvo Group Southern Africa Torbjörn Christensson said this year the company is investing another
R25 million as part of the Youth Employment Service (YES), which will target technical vocational education and training college students.
During the course of the year, the company will establish a specialised Driver Training Academy to address the shortage of skilled drivers in the region at an investment of R1.4 million. They are also continuing with their involvement in Star for Life, a non-profit organisation that aims to provide young people in southern Africa with essential life skills, sports training and health education to the tune of R7.8 million.
Volvo's initiative is in line with the YES initiative led by President Ramaphosa. Launched in March, the initiative between business, government, labour and civil society will see businesses creating one-year paid positions for youth aged between 18 and 35 with a minimum paid stipend of R3 500 a month.
Christensson said Volvo believes in the future of South Africa, especially in the youth and the endless potential they hold. “As a global company, with a strong commitment to the success of South Africa, we also support government's initiative to focus on youth development as is envisioned in initiatives such as the proposed Youth Employment Service,” he said.
President Ramaphosa welcomed the commitment from Volvo, saying it will go a long way in addressing the high rate of youth unemployment which he said is the greatest challenge to social development in South Africa.