Even as South Africa slowly emerges from the suffocating economic grip of the Covid-19 pandemic, lately launched employment statistics proceed to make for grim studying, with practically eight million individuals unemployed.
South Africa actually recorded improved financial exercise in the fourth quarter of 2021, together with an enlargement in real GDP of 1.2% compared to the earlier quarter, however unemployment still reached report levels.
Denice Dumisa
According to the Quarterly Labour Force Survey (QLFS), unemployment in Q4 final year rose to 35.3% from 34.9% within the earlier quarter. This is the best level for the reason that begin of the Quarterly Labour Force Survey in 2008.
Even extra alarmingly, the youth unemployment fee stood at a staggering 65.5%.
The latest employment data was launched at the finish of March by Statistics South Africa (Stats SA), and came simply days after South Africa managed to draw R1.2 trillion in investment in the course of the fourth South Africa Investment Conference.
Analysts have described the country’s economic system as “producing jobless growth” and imagine that even with upward financial growth in the medium term, South Africa will nonetheless have an overall unemployment determine of around 30%.
Youth unemployment is a world problem, much more acutely pronounced in South Africa, where the most recent figures are sounding crucial alarm bells.
In late 2021, Stats SA reported that two out of each three young folks underneath the age of 35 in South Africa are unemployed. For the age cohort underneath 25, this rises to a few out of each four, or a jarring 75%.
But in and amongst the dire unemployment statistics there are rays of sunshine on how to begin to successfully handle this socio-economic crisis.
Education is essential
According to the QLFS report, of the 7,9 million unemployed persons in the fourth quarter of 2021, as many as 51,6% had training ranges below matric.
This number of unemployed drops the upper the education stage. Those with a Matric move constitute 38.6% of unemployed and this determine drops considerably for those with different tertiary qualifications (6.9%) and graduates who constitute only 2.4% of South Africa’s formal unemployed.
Astron Energy’s Organisational Capability, Learning and Development Manager Lindiwe Ncongwane said: “It is an typically repeated mantra that education is the vital thing to success, but the labour pressure survey certainly bears this out.
“Education allied to alternative is the golden key to breaking this cycle of unemployment and to create a future for younger individuals within the country.”
Astron Energy, which operates South Africa’s second largest network of retail websites together with the Caltex brand, runs numerous Youth Development Programmes overlaying both academic assist and workplace and experiential studying opportunities.
Astron Energy’s Youth Development Programmes embody:
Graduate Internship Programme
According to Ncongwane, South African Corporates have a key function to play in providing opportunities for graduates and those with different qualifications to help scale back the number of unemployed, and also to help construct a era of employable younger people.
“Investments in training and expertise improvement, allied to schooling qualifications, will assist build a workforce that’s multi-skilled and in a place to adapt to a large number of duties and industries,” she mentioned.
The 2020 Future of Work report by the World Economic Forum (WEF) found that 50% of all staff will want reskilling by 2025 as adoption of expertise will increase.
The report also listed critical pondering and problem-solving as main abilities employers imagine will be needed over the following 5 years, whereas newer tendencies centre on self-management abilities similar to active learning, resilience, stress tolerance and suppleness.
According to Ncongwane, a key a half of Astron Energy’s focus is to equip young individuals for the world of work, not solely at Astron Energy and the petrochemical trade, but the throughout a spread of disciplines to allow them to be globally competitive.
The company also runs a variety of school-level initiatives within the STEM house, however in line with the 4th Industrial Revolution’s give attention to the 3Cs of Communication, Critical pondering and Collaboration, has broadened this to STEAM – Science, Technology, Arts and Maths – in a bid to develop problem-solving and process-based learning.
The way ahead
“As a rustic, we now have to continue investing within the schooling of our young people, notably within the crucial abilities house, and then create opportunities for them to use these expertise and develop in office environments,” Ncongwane stated.
“As corporates we have to design a range of programmes and initiatives to meet not only the needs of the enterprise, but also the future of work – and critically the future employment possibilities for our young individuals.
“If we do that proper, we will begin changing the outlook on the employment entrance and be sure that economic growth has a tangible influence on the futures and livelihoods of the generations to come back.”
In the Youth Development area, Astron Energy runs the following programmes:
eight X Learnerships in chemical operations at the Astron Energy refinery in Milnerton, Cape Town
20 X Learnerships in Sales and New Venture Creation at Johannesburg workplaces
The Learnerships run from 1 Oct 2021 – 30 Sep 2022
Astron Energy runs a full Bursary programme which covers each beneath graduate and post graduate studies, from 1st yr to Masters Level students.
The bursaries include tuition fees, lodging, books, meals, money allowances and vacation work within the form of internship/in-service-training within the company’s operations.
The programme started in 2020 and to date over 440 students have been funded.
There are at present 196 student bursars and 15 worker bursars as a part of this programme. A total of 26 worker kids are part of the bursary programme for 2022.
The bursary covers a variety of study fields this yr together with:
BSc: Chemical Engineering/ BSc: Industrial Engineering/ BSC: Property Studies/ Masters: Industrial Psychology/ Honours: Financial Accounting/ Bcom: Economics/ BSc: Electrical Engineering/ Bcom/BA: Human Resources Management/ Bcom: Information Technology/ Bcom: Internal Auditing/ Bcom: Logistics/ Occupational Health and Safety/ Bcom: Supply Chain/ BSc: Analytical Chemistry.
Astron Energy also presents profitable bursars the opportunity to be part of the Astron Energy Graduate Training programme.
Astron Energy presents 24-month Apprenticeships in Electrical and Mechanical Engineering and Instrumentation on the refinery in Cape Town. At เกจวัดแรงดัน , the corporate has six apprenticeships in its manufacturing division.
Graduate Programme
The Graduate Internship Programme is run in accordance with the assorted disciplines required by the enterprise and runs for a period of between 18-24 months. The current intake of Graduate interns is about to end on 31 December 2022.
Astron Energy at present has 77 individuals in its Learnership, Apprenticeship and Graduate Internship programmes:
LogisticsGraduate Internship13
CFOGraduate Internship11
RetailGraduate Internship5
HRGraduate Internship3
C & IGraduate Internship2
CEOGraduate Internship2
ManufacturingGraduate Internship1
STOGraduate Internship3
Strategy Graduate Internship2
SHEQGraduate Internship1
ManufacturingChemical Operations Learnership8

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