The Wildlife and Environment Society of South Africa (Wessa) is proud to announce that the first year of the National Department of Environmental Affairs’ Youth Environmental Services (YES) programme was a great success across both the Northern Cape and the Free State.
According to a statement released by Wessa, the two-year programme, which was started in 2019, is creating 540 year long learnership positions in the environmental and ecotourism sectors for the youth. These learnerships are to help the unemployed and disadvantaged youth who are between the ages of 18 and 35 years.
The programme has seen participants gain a year of valuable work experience by being placed with a local organisations. During this time, the participants gained job skills and professional conduct. They received a daily stipend, whether they were being mentored at work or undertaking the 120 university credits of environmental training desired to improve their employability.
Wessa YES programme manager, Morgan Griffiths, explained in the statement that while the YES programme is focused on developing work skills and supporting host organisations within the environmental sector, the programme also required the youth participants to undertake two days of community service each month.
“This saw clinics, schools, creches, old age centres and centres for disabled persons boosted with additional helping hands with other youth arranging community clean-ups and recycling initiatives,” he said.
Wessa is now calling on graduates and matriculants who are interested in serving their community in 2019 to apply to take part in the YES programme at www.wessa.co.za. – Sazly Hartzenberg