Nedbank and ORT SA “Make Things Happen” for Unemployed Youth Through Their YES Program

Nedbank Logo

Actions speak louder than words.

A profound, if stern, proverb that tells us what someone does is always more telling about their character than what they say. The Nedbank YES Programme, in collaboration with ORT SA, strived to exemplify this mentality. 

It was one of many YES (Youth Employment Services) programmes in the country aimed at providing employment opportunities for the country’s youth. 

In this article, we will briefly cover how their plan turned promises into reality and ended up making things happen in the lives of many young people. 

The Nedbank YES program started in May 2019 and ended in April 2020. Nedbank, in collaboration with ORT SA, had one goal for their programme: to provide employment opportunities for 400 young people. As with any big undertaking the programme faced many trials and tribulations, but overall it was a great success for both organisations. 

What People Had to Say

Khabiso Matlanyane, a beneficiary of the programme who’s now a fulltime businessman, had this to say: “It was a great experience. All the organisations involved went far and beyond to meet our needs. The level of professionalism was way beyond my expectations.”

Khabiso also praised the various opportunities and skills the programme presented him with, saying: ”There are various skills that I’ve acquired through the program. First, I now know how to work and communicate with children. Second, I can diagnose technical issues in the workplace & lastly, I’ve developed an attitude of having a good work ethic in the workplace. Currently, I’m a self-employed general dealer. As an agency, we focus on distribution, tutoring and recruitment.”

Mphumeleli Ndlovu, another beneficiary turned businessman, had this to say after securing a job placement because of the program: “The overall experience was life-changing and impactful because the principals and teachers went out of their way to teach me as many lessons as possible. It has inspired me to invest in people from similar situations as a means to empower young people like myself and make meaningful changes to others around me!” 

Mr Ndlovu went on to start his own business, called Allure Water Co, and he attributes his success to the skills and exposure he received from the programme. 


It is becoming increasingly clear that to resolve South Africa’s persistent socio-economic problems, big businesses need to step up to the plate and do their part to create meaningful change. 

As Martin Luther King Junior once said, “Life’s most persistent and urgent question is, ‘What are you doing for others?’”

The YES Programme was a great step towards empowering the country’s youth. It’s only through uplifting the lives of individuals that we can truly start making things happen. 

By Milani Falitenjwa