Nedbank says YES to supporting youth skills development and job creation
Nedbank, our purpose of being financial experts who do good, extends beyond our lending and transactional activities. we are committed to transforming the savings and deposits of citizens and institutions into investment and productive consumption to facilitate inclusive economic growth, employment and transformation.
We strongly believe that it is through partnerships with government, labour and civil society that we will be able to address structural and socioeconomic challenges and ensure the growth, development and stability of our country. While there are varied approaches to addressing our current socio-economic challenges, one of our national priorities remains the need for interventions in youth unemployment. We have embraced the role of change agents and active contributors to building a thriving society.
As part of this commitment to South Africa’s youth, Nedbank supports the Youth Employment Service (YES) initiative. YES is a business-led collaboration with government and labour that is working to stimulate job creation through company investment and government incentives and recognition programmes.
As of the beginning of 2019, the bank has pledged a quarterly investment of approximately 1,5% of its three-year average net profit after tax per annum to enable the good work of the YES programme and provide employment opportunities to more than 3 000 youths, either through placements within Nedbank Group itself, or by means of sponsored placements with YES implementation partners.
As the following stories of success and transformation attest, Nedbank’s YES commitment is already delivering positive change in the lives of many young South Africans:
Mosesi ‘Moss’ Mosesi 27 – A young urban farmer with a passion for fresh produce
‘Moss’ Mosesi runs a successful hydroponics business that produces remarkable crop yields and can provide employment opportunities for people in Tembisa
After Moss Mosesi qualified as a civil engineer, he found himself unable to access employment. Instead of allowing this challenge to get him down, the 27-year-old entrepreneur decided to combine his engineering training with his love of plants to create his own opportunities in life. He successfully applied for learnership in agriculture from the National Youth Development Agency (NYDA) and, while completing his agriculture internship, was introduced to the Youth Employment Service (YES) initiative.
He was instantly hooked on the potential that he recognised for effective urban farming through hydroponics and set up his ‘New Liff’ hydroponics business made possible by Nedbank’s sponsorship of Kago Aquaponics Hub in Tembisa.
“During my studies I ended up running the aquaponics farm and became so involved in this work and its potential that I decided to start my own business,” he says.
Today, his typical working day involves feeding the fish, spinning the drum filters, planning and planting seedlings and doing all the chores that come with running a farm. And Moss is clearly a natural at urban farming. His farm currently produced a regular weekly crop of five different varieties of lettuce, and various other fresh vegetables, which he provides to a number of local chefs. He has also formed a relationship with Lance Quiding, head of farming operations at Integrated Agriculture, who is helping him to refine his business even further.
“I have always been passionate about plants and when I discovered urban farming, the love spiralled out of control,” he says. Now, Moss has big plans to expand his crop and increase his yields to meet steadily growing demand. He also wants to grow his business so that it can provide employment and learning opportunities for other young people in surrounding communities.
Sinenhlanhla Ramashia 24 – Transforming futures, one young person at a time
For Sinenhlanhla Ramashia, there’s no such thing as an ordinary or boring work day. The vibrant and energetic 24-year-old is currently completing her work experience at the Nelson Mandela Capture Site in KwaZulu- Natal. She offers informative tours of the site to tourists of all ages and nationalities, and even has the opportunity to put her newly acquired health- care training into practice by offering first aid services.
If it wasn’t for the Youth Employment Service programme, the future could have looked quite different for this remarkable, multi-talented young woman. “I used to live in Johannesburg with my mother and I managed to get myself into a lot of trouble as a teenager,” she says, “and I didn’t even write my final matric exams.”
However, after her mother passed away, Ramashia realised that she would find it difficult to make her way through life without any formal training, so she moved to Mooi River in Kwazulu Natal and enrolled in a primary health course offered at a local FET campus. Completing the three-year course not only gave her the qualifications she needed to get work, but also boosted her confidence in her own abilities and the value she had to offer. But despite her qualifications and positive outlook on life, she spent several months unsuccessfully looking for employment. Then her sister told her about the Youth Employment Service programme in partnership with Nedbank and the WILDTRUST. She sailed through the interview process and soon found herself doing work that she truly loves at the Nelson Mandela Capture Site.
“I love this career and the opportunities it offers me,” she says, “and I love teaching the children about the history and story of Nelson Mandela and learning more about him myself. I also enjoy getting involved in the business and working with everyone else. My mentor, Ayanda Nyanteni, has given me so much support and helped me achieve more than I ever thought possible.”
Sindisiwe Duma 28 – Recycling champion and earth ambassador
Growing up, Sindisiwe Duma had always wanted to become involved with environmental projects, especially after seeing the extent to which environmental issues were neglected in her local community.
So, when the opportunity came up for her to be a part of the WILDLANDS Recycling Programme through the Youth Employment Services (YES) initiative in partnership with Nedbank and the
WILDTRUST, she jumped at the chance. “WILDLANDS Recycling works in partnership with businesses to provide recycling services to schools and communities,” she explains, “ and I’m excited to be part of a team works in the recycling village at Hilton, where our focus is to collect recyclable waste and essentially turn it into
treasure.” Duma says she loves her job because it allows her to make a real difference to the world while also driving positive attitude and behaviour changes in communities. “I am determined to educate the people in my community about the environmental issues we are facing and inspire other young people to be part of the solution.”
She has been so inspired by the work that she is now looking to further her studies in the environmental preservation field and learn all she can about recycling. She even hopes to one day open her own recycling business and create employment opportunities for others.