On 1 October 2021, primary schools in Umlazi KZN welcomed 150 youth in administrative and teaching assistant roles. Their job for the next 12 months was to gain work experience through the Youth Employment Services (YES) programme sponsored by Toyota SA and managed by ORT SA.
100 youth went on to participate in ORT SA’s EM Education Trust program, an integrated online digital skills program comprising a variety of in-house courses as well as CISCO™ and LinkedIn.
Phumelele Mnguni, one of the participants shares her story:
“This is a wonderful experience, I can reflect and identify what I enjoy the most and least. The activities at Yes4Youth keep me motivated and willing to try something new, and the online workshops give me hope. I’m constantly learning something new”.
She says that her host school has a fantastic work environment to develop and gain experience, and has learned to be an independent woman. “Ekuthuleni Primary School has wonderful staff members who make sure you feel at home. They can correct you if you are wrong or moving in the wrong direction. They include you in every function, event, and small gathering they are having. They are willing to teach and guide you throughout”.
Phumelele was able to harness her entrepreneurial spirit and started a small business with her salary earned from the YES programme.
“I bought a sewing machine and a cake mixer and I’m supplementing my income by sewing dresses and skirts and baking cakes on order. I already have my learner’s licence and currently taking driving lessons. Thank you to ORT SA for the great opportunity!”