Youth ready for green economy

2019-03-06 06:02
The Wildlife and Environment Society of South Africa (Wessa) and the Department of Economic, Small Business Development, Tourism and Environmental Affairs (Destea) presented certificates to 81 candidates who completed skills training in the Youth Environmental Services (Yes) programme. From the left are Slangman Baloyi (Mangaung Metro), Gail Ramultshila (Destea), Dr Mbulelo Nokwequ (head of Destea), Thato Mojakhomo, Thuto Mofokeng, Palesa Makwaela (all Yes graduates), Limakatso Mahasa (MEC for Economic, Small Business Development, Tourism and Environmental Affairs) and Dr Thommie Burger (chief executive officer of Wessa).    Photo: Supplied

The Wildlife and Environment Society of South Africa (Wessa) and the Department of Economic, Small Business Development, Tourism and Environmental Affairs (Destea) presented certificates to 81 candidates who completed skills training in the Youth Environmental Services (Yes) programme. From the left are Slangman Baloyi (Mangaung Metro), Gail Ramultshila (Destea), Dr Mbulelo Nokwequ (head of Destea), Thato Mojakhomo, Thuto Mofokeng, Palesa Makwaela (all Yes graduates), Limakatso Mahasa (MEC for Economic, Small Business Development, Tourism and Environmental Affairs) and Dr Thommie Burger (chief executive officer of Wessa). Photo: Supplied

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A group of 81 candidates successfully completed basic training in environmental and tourism skills that have made them ready to face the world.

They walked the red carpet at a ceremony held in Bloemfontein on Thursday (28/02) and were presented a certificate of competency at the event.

The successful candidates were of the 101 participants from the Free State enlisted for a one-year accredited Youth Environmental Ser­vices (Yes) programme.

Training was presented through a partnership between the Department of Environmental Affairs (DEA) and the Wildlife and Environment Society of South Africa (Wessa). Wessa is the implementing agency while the department funds the project.

Ntokozo Sibeko, director of the DEA, said the programme was aimed at creating learnership opportunities in the environmental and ecotourism sectors for at least 270 unemployed and previously disadvantaged Free Staters between the ages of 18 and 35.

Dr Thommie Burger, chief executive officer of Wessa, said the graduates had been equipped with skills and work experience that made them competent in the job market.

“Of these graduates, 63% are young women and 2% are disabled youth who were given an opportunity to enter the economy,” Burger said.

Over the year the participants were placed at selected private and public entities as part of the training. This programme is in line with sustainable development and the upliftment of communities.

According to Limakatso Mahasa, MEC for Economic, Small Business Development, Tourism and Environmental Affairs, the graduates have earned themselves a place in the green economy, aimed at helping to develop a more sustainable future for their local communities.

It is believed that the training they received will stand them in good stead to start their own small businesses, or take up full-time employment or continued study at tertiary institutions.

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