Youth urged to empower themselves with education

Public Works Deputy Director General Clive Mtshisa has called on young people to empower themselves with education so they can infiltrate the job market.
Speaking at the 3rd Annual Winter School Camp organised by the Department of Public Works in Kameeldrift, Pretoria, on Tuesday, Mtshisa said the department is faced with serious challenges of skills shortage.
He encouraged the youth attending the camp to be entrepreneurs in their communities, adding that government will support them.
“Government supports young entrepreneurs,” he said, adding that they should play more meaningful roles in their communities.
About 100 learners from Grade 10 to 12 from various provinces were selected to attend the department’s winter school camp from 12 -18 July.
While at the camp, the learners will receive daily Maths and Science tutorials in an effort to address learning gaps and to focus on remedial work.
Built environment young professionals from the department will also make presentations aimed at attracting the learners into the built environment.
Among other things, the young people attending the camp are encouraged to take Maths and Science seriously to enable them to enter the built environment.
Through the winter camp, the department hopes to achieve its goal of closing the gap of skills shortage in the country.
At the camps, the learners are also taught about issues pertaining to leadership.
Project Co-ordinator from the South African Agency for Science and Technology Advancement (SAASTA), Bafedile Kgwadi, encouraged the youth to be responsible in whatever they do.
“It is your responsibility to take your books and study, you have to know your responsibilities,” she said.
She cautioned them that in life they will come across obstacles.
“Remember you will not be the first person to come across these challenges, you have the potential to succeed, you can do it,” she said.
Kgwadi also encouraged the teachers to continue with the good work they were doing.
One of the learners at the camp, Zanele Cossa, a learner at Soshanguve South Secondary School, told the other learners about her art innovation.
“We use our paintings to express our feelings,” she told SAnews, adding that they also use their paintings to raise funds for their school.
She encouraged other young people to keep themselves busy as this will keep them away from bad things like committing crime.
Once the learners reach tertiary level, the department will offer them bursaries to pursue careers in fields such as Engineering, among others.
Upon completion, the learners are provided an opportunity to do their in-service training at the department.
Among other things, SAASTA aims to advance public awareness, appreciation and engagement of science, engineering and technology in South Africa.
SAASTA has a programme where it invites unemployed science, engineering and technology graduates (18 to 35 years of age) to volunteer their services towards the implementation of the Youth into Science Strategy under the auspices of the National Youth Service Programme. –