This Youth Day, Action Volunteers Africa (AVA) launched its new ‘mobile career cafe’ – a trailer that has been converted into a mobile one-stop-shop to assist rural youth with job-readiness services – in Avian Park, Worcester.
Worcester, South Africa (22 June 2021) – ‘Bone-chilling’ statistics reveal that, currently, 74% of youth in South Africa are unemployed , and 65% of learners are leaving school without matriculation. Young people not in Education, Employment or Training (NEET) for long periods of time are especially vulnerable to socio-economic exclusion. They are at a higher risk of conflicting with the law.
A lack of services outside South Africa’s metropolises mean that rural youth are particularly vulnerable to long-term unemployment. Innovative interventions, coupled with collaborative partnerships in the sector, are key to addressing youth unemployment, especially if the model can be replicated and scaled.
Action Volunteers Africa (AVA), a Cape Town-based NPO specialising in empowering youth to be ready for the world of work.
Launching the career cafe
Approximately 40 young people attended the mobile career cafe that provided various workshops that focused on being resourceful in looking for opportunities in their area, learning interview skills and compiling a CV. Cape Winelands Biosphere Reserve (CWBR), Talitha Cumi – two local non-profit organisations – and the Department of Correctional Services partnered to make the event a success. Xavier, one of the youths that participated, reflected on the event.
“I got many answers and a clear perception on what I want to do. I discovered how to compile a CV and how to answer interview questions, and choices I can make to move forward.”
“The initiative is brilliant as it gives opportunity for young people in limited resourced areas access to professional power sessions to support them with skills in their job-seeking process,” reflected Carmelita Jeftha from Talitha Cumi. Young ex-offenders attended the event, which was “a good way of making them feel part of their community and the rest to realise that they are normal young people in need of support.”
Future plans for the Mobile Career Cafe
In partnership with the CWBR, AVA plans to visit more towns and under-served areas in the Western Cape with their Mobile Career café. Organisations and companies keen to know more and possibly have the trailer visit their area can contact AVA at firstname.lastname@example.org.