Government and Opportunities for Youth

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SA Governemnt

Government sees the youth as the future leaders of our country. This page focuses on opportunities that Government provides for the youth.
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The Draft National Youth Policy 2020 was launched in January 2015.  Minister in the Presidency Jeff Radebe will on 12 August 2015 sign the National Youth Policy 2020 (NYP2020).The NYP 2020 is a set of goals and commitments by government in advancing youth development. It was extensively consulted before being adopted by the executive cabinet.

Bursaries, internships and learnerships

Are you young, energetic, intelligent, physically and mentally fit individuals, dedicated to serving their country by pursuing a career in policing? The South African Police Service invites applications from all races and gender to enlist as a police trainee. For the requirements, application form and an exercise guide, see

Other opportunities:

Government has established a range of support programmes and strategies to empower youth in the various sectors such as:

  • Minister of Arts and Culture Paul Mashatile reported in his budget vote speech for 2012/13 that as part of the Mzansi Golden Economy Strategy, a number of high impact programmes targeting youth and women in the arts have been identified. These include:
    • the Indoni, My Heritage My Pride programme which aims to provide young people with life skills training, education and encouragement in appreciating who they are, their heritage and their culture
    • the Trendsetter Initiative through which the department encourages youth to participate in the arts and thus contribute to the development of their communities
    • the Public Art programme, skilling young people and employing them to beautify their communities using their artistic abilities
    • the Emerging Creatives programmes, providing an opportunity for 40 young designers to showcase their designs along side established designers at the Design Indaba in Cape Town.
  • Expanded Public Works Programme (EPWP) initiatives that sees young people involved in the refurbishment, rehabilitation, and maintenance of community infrastructure across the country.
  • Learnerships and internships focussed on raising the skills capacity of young people through Sector Education and Training Authorities.
  • National Rural Youth Service Corps programme aims to enhance skills development by providing unemployed youth in the rural areas with opportunities to work in their communities and to be trained to provide the necessary services for local socio-economic development. A total of 7 398 youth were enrolled in the programme in 2010. The enrolment number will gradually increase by recruiting a further 5 000 youth during this financial year (2011/12) and a further 10 000 during the 2012/13 financial year.
  • The Western Cape Provincial Government has several initiatives for young people.
  • Gauteng Provincial Government announced youth employment programmes for 2012, namely a youth placement programme, Township Enterprise Hubs and a Youth Entrepreneurship Development Programme (Y-Age).

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Study opportunities

The Department of Higher Education and Training is operating the Central Application Clearing House or CACH. The CACH Call Centre and website went live on 7 January 2014 when the public school matriculation results were released. The CACH service is for learners who qualify for higher education studies but have not been accepted at an institution of their choice at the time the matric results were released. It is also for those learners who did not apply before the closing dates last year and now find that they are eligible for higher education studies.
Learners looking for spaces in the university education system can contact the call centre on 0860 356 635 or send an SMS with their name and ID number to 49200and be telephoned back free of charge. They can also access the system via the website The CACH service will verify the learner’s information and forward it to institutions that still have unfilled places. Where places exist and applicants meet the requirements, institutions will contact students to offer them available places. The 2014 CACH service is also geared to provide information to assist anyone interested in pursuing further education and training opportunities. Learners will also be offered free career advice and be guided through possible alternate options at FET Colleges.

National Youth Development Agency

The National Youth Development Agency is a government agency whose role is to initiate, facilitate, implement, coordinate and monitor youth development interventions aimed at reducing youth unemployment and promoting social cohesion.
The NYDA’s mandate is to:

  • Advance youth development through guidance and support to initiatives across sectors of society and spheres of government.
  • Embark on initiatives that seek to advance the economic development of young people.
  • Develop and coordinate the implementation of the Integrated Youth Development Strategy for the country.

Government services for the youth

Government has a number of services that benefit the youth.

Personal identification

It is essential to have an identity document when you want to register for writing the matric exams or getting a drivers licence.


You can register on the national voter’s roll when you are 16, but may only vote once you have turned 18.


You can get a drivers’ licence at eighteen.

Tertiary education

Tertiary education is becoming more important. Government supports students who cannot afford the fees.

Career Development Services

The Department of Higher Education and Training currently runs a Career Development Services Centre to assist learners with career advice.
SMS or “Please Call Me”: 072 204 5056
Telephone: 086 999 0123
National Career Advice Portal:
Walk-in Centre: 123 Francis Baard Street, Pretoria


Once you have completed your education, you need to start looking for a job.


With a job comes the responsibility to pay tax.

Travel outside SA

Some young people prefer to travel before pursuing further education.



Government youth websites and social media

International websites

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