Cape Town – The City of Cape Town recently hosted an event which attracted 480 young people from across the city and gave them the opportunity to network with City departments and exhibitors to gain insight into available career choices.
“Relevant education is a critical determinant of young people’s future work prospects, earnings, and contribution to the economy of Cape Town,” said the City’s Mayoral Committee Member for Corporate Services, Councillor Raelene Arendse.
“Generally, school enrolment is high, however, according to the 2011 Census data, only 40% of young people between the ages of 20 and 24 years have a matric (Grade 12) certificate,” Arendse said.
She added that there was also a significant skills mismatch whereby temporary employment in the low skill sector in Cape Town is high while there was a requirement for more highly skilled workers.
“This means that many of these young people will face long periods of unemployment.”
The expo provided the youth with information on City-specific career options. It was also the final youth career expo for this year, which was organised by the City of Cape Town’s Transversal Youth Development Work Stream in conjunction with other City departments.
According to the City of Cape Town, officials on hand introduced the youth to available City careers related to their skills and qualifications and helped them identify the key skills they needed in order to become successful City of Cape Town professionals.
“Last year, Council adopted the City’s Organisational Development and Transformation Plan (ODTP). One of the ODTP’s key priorities is to ensure economic inclusion especially for our future generation by providing bursaries in areas of scarce skills and offering apprenticeships and other forms of work experience to prepare young people for the world of work,” said Councillor Suzette Little, Mayoral Committee Member for Area North.
“As a local government, we need to make sure that our youth are not the forgotten and lost generation as they are the future of this country,” she added.
According to the 2013 Labour Force Survey, 60, 96% of youth between the ages of 15 – 24 years old are considered to be NEETs (not in employment, education, or training).