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MultiChoice invests R50m in job creation

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The MultiChoice Group has invested R50 million towards two youth-focused initiatives, to provide employment opportunities for 500 South African youths.

The pay-TV operator partnered with the Youth Employment Service (YES) initiative, creating 400 new job opportunities, as well as 100 sports coaching learnerships through its Let’s Play initiative.

The 500 young people will be employed in industries that include telecommunication, human resource management, engineering, satellite communication, coaching and ICT.

In addition, the opportunity has been spread to youngsters across different provinces, including the Eastern Cape, Free State, Mpumalanga, Northern Cape and North West, notes MultiChoice.

A Statistics SA report paints a bleak reality of youth unemployment in SA: By the end of 2019, approximately 55% of South Africa’s youth aged 15–24 years were without jobs and, within an economy that was experiencing slow to no growth, prospects were limited.

This has been further exacerbated by the COVID-19 pandemic which has seen the economies of developed, and developing, countries brought to their knees.

“We have a long history of supporting and investing in programmes that are skewed towards the youth,” says Calvo Mawela, MultiChoice Group CEO.

“Through a host of corporate social investment programmes, education, skills development, enterprise development and sports development initiatives, we are helping to shape a new generation of South Africans who are ready to lead the continent into the next era.”

The YES initiative is a business-led collaboration with government to create work opportunities for unemployed black South Africans between the ages of 18 and 35. Through the MultiChoice partnership, candidates will be given new electronic devices, such as laptops, so that they can fully participate in training.

The Let’s Play Physical Education Challenge has over the past five years become one of the Department of Basic Education’s flagship school enrichment programmes. Through this project, more than 100 000 primary school learners have been encouraged to adopt physical activity as a lifestyle, according to MultiChoice.

The initiative has also equipped life orientation teachers with the tools they need to become better physical education implementers.

Dr Tashmia Ismail-Saville, CEO of YES, says: “MultiChoice is pioneering the behaviours we need to see all companies display in the future, as it embraces true transformation. This COVID-19-battered economy is seeing unprecedented job losses and economic fallout, and youth are once again going to bear the brunt of this catastrophe.

“The MultiChoice YES project is a perfect example of meaningful transformation and how companies can support the country’s way out of the crisis by creating employment opportunities and incomes so desperately needed for our communities to emerge less bruised.”

Meanwhile, the Harambe Entrepreneurship Alliance, a network of corporations backed by Cisco and South African billionaire Jonathan Oppenheimer’s foundation, has committed $1 million in funding to help support African tech start-ups though the Harambeans Prosperity Fund.

The Harambe Entrepreneur Alliance, a platform for young African social, business and political entrepreneurs, is inviting tech start-ups to apply for financial support.

The Harambeans Prosperity Fund will make capital available to a limited number of entrepreneurs within its network, who have repositioned their ventures, or had proven business models prior to the pandemic, and are likely to thrive in the new norm but are unable to access capital markets.

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