In South Africa, young people continue to be disadvantaged in a labour market where the youth unemployment rate is higher than the national average. In increasingly tough times, unemployment statistics paint a bleak picture. Unfortunately, and counter-productively, young people are often blamed for their own predicament. There is a prevailing perception of them as lacking drive, optimism and motivation. But this could not be further from the truth.
Many organisations in the youth development sector are working to change these perceptions and unlock opportunities for young people. The sector is no short of innovation, but it lacks a unifying strategy to get behind. It needs a high-level plan of action modelling the key levers that will unlock possibility for young people from the individual level to systemic change.
This is where Youth Capital is making a difference by seizing an opportunity to build momentum around an ‘Action Plan’ for the sector. Youth Capital is a campaign that advocates for youth-centred and evidence-based responses to youth unemployment.
The ‘Action Plan’ combines data with young people’s lived experiences, and identifies the 10 key levers that have the potential to shift gears on youth unemployment. Youth Capital has the objective of framing youth unemployment from the perspective of young people, elevating their voices and experiences to shift gears on policies that can have large-scale impact.
In this podcast, we speak to Kristal Duncan-Williams, Project Lead for Youth Capital about their work to address youth unemployment through building coalitions in the sector. We will also hear from Sharmi Surianarain, Chief Impact Officer for Harambee Youth Employment Accelerator, and Sandiswa Gwele from the Ukhanyo Foundation. Both Harambee and Ukhanyo have signed the Action Plan.
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