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Empowering Youth: The Ready for Work Programme

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In an effort to empower youth in rural areas, Enterprises University of Pretoria and the Centre for the Advancement of Sustainable Higher Education Futures (CASHEF), Faculty of Education at the University of Pretoria have collaborated to offer the Ready for Work programme to 49 pupils. Sponsored by the Australian High Commission South Africa, the CASHEF initiative, Kola Adeyemo Projects on Health, Education and Sports (KAP-HES) targets high school graduates residing in rural areas, equipping them with essential skills and resources to thrive in the professional world.

The programme commenced on 25 March 22024, at Future Africa, University of Pretoria. The inaugural session welcomed 25 pupils from Marapyane in Mpumalanga and another 24 from Matshiretsane in Limpopo.

The event commenced with an address by Prof Samuel Adeyemo, Associate Professor and Director of the Centre for the Advancement of Sustainable Higher Education Futures (CASHEF) at the University of Pretoria. This was followed by speeches from the Dean of the Faculty of Education and His Excellency David Geyer, the Deputy High Commissioner of the Australian High Commission, South Africa.

The students were further inspired by distinguished guests, including Dr Lwandiso Mpepho, the Deputy Director of International Relations at the National Department of Human Settlements, South Africa; Mr Faith Dube, the Health and Care Coordinator of the International Federation of Red Cross and Red Crescent Societies (IFRC) South Africa; and Dr Cherese Jones Couto, Senior Lecturer in Humanities Education at the University of Pretoria. The ceremony concluded with closing remarks from Prof Siphiwe Mthiyane, Head of Department for Education Management Policy Studies at the University of Pretoria.

Over the course of the programme, students engaged in workshops and practical sessions aimed at enhancing their employability skills and fostering personal development. Topics covered included communication skills, critical thinking, financial literacy, and career planning.

The Ready for Work programme stands as a beacon of hope for rural youth, equipping them with the tools and confidence to navigate the complexities of the modern workforce and contribute meaningfully to society. Through collaborative efforts and strategic partnerships, such initiatives pave the way for a brighter and more inclusive future for all.

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