Youth Day 2022 comes at a time of global political unrest following two years of educational & employment setbacks and economic recovery. Yet, it’s also a time when technology and IoT have created much more accessible and diverse opportunities.

As we commemorate the 46th anniversary of Youth Day, it’s a reminder never to forget our past, learn from history and use it as motivation to keep striving for a better tomorrow, for everyone. From past to present.

Currently, youth unemployment in South Africa is 64% of those aged between 15 and 24 and 43% of those aged between 25 and 34. This is a very concerning number and a key priority being addressed.

The focus should be on boosting skills in every job, and deepening enterprise capabilities, particularly SMMEs. We must seize opportunities in the African continent and improve the country’s attractiveness as an investment destination. The public and private sectors must work together to boost skills in every job, especially with a young unemployed population and those not in school; the government should strengthen adult and youth learning provisions.

We encourage the country, especially youth and youth-owned SMMEs, to join Productivity SA in participating in Youth Month by recognising the present and future role of the youth in shaping the country’s socio-economic landscape.

Social Media Revolution

Social media has become a valuable channel of remuneration. According to IOL, who conducted an interview with social media influencer Daniel Marven, he noted that the youth has a chance to use social media as a tool that could help eradicate unemployment.

“More clients struggle to find time to go through normal advertising processes, so it is important to evolve and introduce new ways of doing things. Young people with ideas must understand that the content they produce on social media can be paid for if due processes are followed, and they monetise their content. Everyone should familiarise themselves with social media, and take advantage of the opportunities.”

In addition, online learning opportunities are becoming more popular too, with the help of social media and virtual courses.

Yes 4 Youth

YES is a business-led collaboration seeking groundbreaking ways to reignite the economy and give youth a dignified first chance.

The YES 12-month quality work experience equips unemployed youth with a toolkit to be a beacon of hope for their families, households and communities. The CV & reference letter they get at the end of their 12-months gives them a 3x greater chance of an interview call-back.

Their vision is to transform companies and communities by connecting youth to economic opportunity, thus building a future that works.

Labour Activation Program (LAP) 

LAP is a program within the Department of Employment and Labour, funded by the Unemployment Insurance Fund (UIF). The program aims to skill and up-skill the unemployed youth and unemployed UIF beneficiaries to gain access to the labour market and establish their own businesses.

LAP realises this objective by focusing on the following areas:

  • Partnering with other government institutions in the implementation of job creation initiatives,
  • Funding turn-around solutions to companies in distress,
  • Participating in the implementation of the Training Lay-Off Scheme, and
  • Training of the unemployed.

Together and through creative and innovative initiatives, we can drive the productivity and competitiveness movement. This includes building awareness of the importance of a new mindset about productivity in South Africa, paving the way for many more highly paid jobs and ultimately a more inclusive society.