Youths will learn vi­tal tech­ni­cal skills

Afro Voice (Free State) - - FREE STATE NEWS - BECKER SEMELA beck­ers@the­newage.co.za

A TO­TAL of 100 un­em­ployed youths from across Met­sima­holo lo­cal mu­nic­i­pal­ity have been placed un­der the skills devel­op­ment pro­gramme, by the pub­lic works and in­fra­struc­ture depart­ment, in part­ner­ship with Sa­sol.

The depart­ment spokesper­son, Mlungisi Maqubela, said the on­go­ing pro­gramme was aimed at equip­ping young peo­ple with tech­ni­cal skills.

He said the par­tic­i­pants gath­ered at Boiket­long hall in Sa­sol­burg last week for an of­fi­cial in­duc­tion and clar­ity on the pro­gramme and sign­ing of con­tracts.

“The young peo­ple par­tic­i­pat­ing in the pro­gramme come from dif­fer­ent back­grounds and hold dif­fer­ent lev­els of qual­i­fi­ca­tions,” Maqubela said.

“The qual­i­fi­ca­tions are not nec­es­sar­ily con­sid­ered as the pro­gramme is struc­tured in such a man­ner that it will de­velop the skills of the par­tic­i­pants.”

He said the pro­gramme was un­der­taken through the ex­panded pub­lic works pro­gramme, as a govern­ment pro­gramme aimed at al­le­vi­at­ing poverty and pro­vid­ing in­come re­lief through tem­po­rary work.

“The pro­gramme be­gan on Thurs­day and will end in Novem­ber and par­tic­i­pants will be granted a stipend on a monthly ba­sis,” Maqubela said.

He said the govern­ment had spe­cific in­ter­ven­tions for the up­lift­ing of youth in the prov­ince to re­duce un­em­ploy­ment.

Met­sima­holo mayor Lindiwe Tshon­gwe called on young peo­ple to grab this op­por­tu­nity with both hands.

“This is an op­por­tu­nity to trans­form your lives for the bet­ter and de­ter­mine your fu­ture, many would have loved to have had this op­por­tu­nity, but you were the for­tu­nate ones,” she said while talk­ing to the youth.

She said the first part of the pro­gramme would be based on self-dis­cov­ery where young par­tic­i­pants learned more about them­selves be­fore they could be placed in a work­place en­vi­ron­ment they were suit­able for.

One of the young peo­ple, Palesa Bon­iswa, was so happy and ex­cited to be part of the pro­gramme.

“I was just sit­ting at home do­ing noth­ing be­fore I joined the pro­gramme,” she said.

“I was hope­less with­out any source of in­come but now I’m re­lieved as this pro­gramme will put food on my ta­ble and also en­hance my skills.”

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