Creat­ing a brighter fu­ture for our youth

Public Sector Manager - - Message From The Minister -

On 16 June it will be 42 years since the tragic and sense­less killing of school pupils dur­ing the 1976 Soweto Up­ris­ing.The deaths of th­ese young peo­ple – who protested peace­fully for their right to ed­u­ca­tion – were not in vain.They sparked in­ter­na­tional out­rage, which played a cru­cial role in bring­ing an end to apartheid.

The mas­sacre also acted as a cat­a­lyst for the cel­e­bra­tion of Youth Day and Youth Month, which we cel­e­brate ev­ery June. As re­spon­si­ble adults, we should all be fa­mil­iaris­ing our chil­dren with the sig­nif­i­cance of the Soweto Up­ris­ing.The protest and the lon­glast­ing im­pact it had holds many lessons for the youth of to­day.

It re­minds all of us of the strug­gles the youth of the apartheid era went through to achieve a fair ed­u­ca­tion sys­tem that would ben­e­fit gen­er­a­tions to come. It re­minds us of their Con­sti­tu­tional right to gain an ed­u­ca­tion. And it re­minds the youth that we can make a dif­fer­ence in their own lives and those of oth­ers.

It is also a re­minder of the cru­cial re­spon­si­bil­ity we have to cre­ate an en­vi­ron­ment where our chil­dren and young peo­ple can flour­ish. The is­sues faced by the youth, which in­clude un­em­ploy­ment, drug and al­co­hol abuse and un­planned preg­nancy, can only be solved through col­lec­tive ef­forts from all mem­bers of so­ci­ety.

Gov­ern­ment recog­nises that it has to cre­ate a solid frame­work for youth em­pow­er­ment, while also trans­lat­ing plans into ac­tion. This is why youth em­pow­er­ment is cen­tral to many of na­tional, pro­vin­cial and lo­cal gov­ern­ments' pro­grammes.

The Na­tional Youth Pol­icy (NYP) cre­ates a frame­work that shapes a com­mon vi­sion to en­able young South Africans to ac­tively par­tic­i­pate and con­trib­ute to­wards so­ci­ety and the econ­omy. The suc­cess of the pol­icy largely de­pends on the suc­cess­ful im­ple­men­ta­tion of the In­te­grated Youth De­vel­op­ment Strat­egy, which out­lines how the goals of the NYP can be achieved.

Of the many youth pro­grammes be­ing im­ple­mented by gov­ern­ment, the new Youth Em­ploy­ment Ser­vice is one of the most ex­cit­ing and is ex­pected to have a sig­nif­i­cant pos­i­tive im­pact on youth un­em­ploy­ment.

Launched by Pres­i­dent Cyril Ramaphosa in March, the pro­gramme aims to build ac­tive part­ner­ships be­tween gov­ern­ment, busi­ness, labour and civil so­ci­ety with the goal of creat­ing one mil­lion work op­por­tu­ni­ties over the next three years. This will be achieved through the place­ment of un­em­ployed youth into 12-month long work­place ex­pe­ri­ence pro­grammes, while also de­vel­op­ing black-owned small, medium and macro en­ter­prises.

It is en­cour­ag­ing to see that more than 100 com­pa­nies have al­ready signed up for the ini­tia­tive. With busi­ness and civil so­ci­ety sup­port­ing gov­ern­ment's in­tense fo­cus on the youth, we are ush­er­ing in a brighter to­mor­row for the peo­ple who hold the fu­ture of South Africa in their hands.

Com­mu­ni­ca­tions Min­is­terNomvula Mokonyane.

Newspapers in English

Newspapers from South Africa

© PressReader. All rights reserved.