IN CHALLENGING times like these, companies need to step in and help young entrepreneurs achieve their best.
In the Youth Entrepreneurship Programme, partners Vodacom and Innovator Trust moved to turn jobless youth into successful entrepreneurs.
The programme is set to drive innovation and create jobs which could bring significant changes to the local economy.
To kick it off, the partners are offering 10 unemployed Gauteng youth who graduated from the Vodacom Academy a spot in the programme.
For six months, the qualifying youth get business training from experienced teachers.
Takalani Netshitenzhe, chief officer of corporate affairs at Vodacom, said: “South Africa’s youth unemployment statistics are shooting through the roof – the unemployment rate for those under 25 years is 67,4%. It shows that two out of three South Africans between 18 to 28 years are unemployed.
“The programme is part of our desire to slow the rising unemployment rate among youth. It focuses on the business development support needed by the 10 academy graduates by developing their business ideas, models, plans and more.”
In turn, the graduates increase their chances of becoming successful entrepreneurs, which also increases their chances of qualifying for the full business incubation programme.
The programme includes courses such as pitching and presentation skills, business development, marketing, creating a business plan, and due diligence and compliance – intellectual property and labour laws, the New Companies Act and BEE, and HR and financial management.
Tashline Jooste, CEO of the Innovator Trust, said there is no doubt that entrepreneurs, especially in the ICT industry, often lack business fundamentals that are needed for small business success.
“This is an opportunity for us to change the face of the industry but also a way to point these young up and coming entrepreneurs in the right direction.”