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Keynote address by Deputy Minister Elizabeth Thabethe at the North West Youth Month Imbizo
Keynote address by Deputy Minister Elizabeth Thabethe at the North West Youth Month Imbizo
​​​Ayeye National Youth month Ayeye! 
Ayeye Tourism Ayeye!
Ayeye North West Ayeye! 

Programme Director, 
Deputy Minister Buti Manamela
MEC Desbo Mohono
Ladies and Gentlemen, 

Programme Director, as we observe Youth Month today, we need to take into cognisance the vision and legacy of Oliver Reginald Tambo which is equal opportunities for all. Our government advocates for the advancement of youth economic empowerment. We do acknowledge that the economically active population of our country is young and unemployed. That is where tourism and other sectors will have to demonstrate their potential in addressing societal challenges which are poverty, unemployment and inequality. 

More travellers are discovering our beautiful country and they see value in it as an exceptional destination for holiday and business events. Therefore, for South Africa to compete globally as an attractive tourist destination, we need to ensure that we employ the right people with the right skills but also provide quality service that will trigger repeat visits into our various provinces which have unique offerings.  

The department offers learnership programmes that are accredited and approved nationally and internationally by the Tourism and Hospitality Seta, CATHSSETA and City and Guilds, a renowned skills solution provider for Africa. Through these opportunities, we target unemployed youth who have matric. 

The department is on a recruitment drive for a learnership programme called “The Hospitality Youth Training programme. 200 unemployed youth will be recruited from this province. The adverts were placed on our national newspapers and the closing date for North West recruitment is 19 June 2017. I hope you have applied and if not, you only have five days to do so. Please obtain the necessary information and apply. 

Another initiative that the department will undertake this year, is to recruit more than 500 learners for a National certificate in Professional Cookery and Advance diploma in Pastry. Professional cookery or chef trade is a scarce skill in South Africa and one of the most difficult positions to fill globally. To qualify for this learnership, you must atleast have matric and a passion for cooking

Bantwana bam, other training opportunities that we offer include: 
  • Training of 60 learners on resource efficiency and cleaner production. Here we targeting students who have N6 and the recruitment has started in KZN, Gauteng and Limpopo. 
  • 205 leaners or stewards have been recruited and placed at 51 beaches in the coastal provinces.
  • Recruitment for 300 youth for the Sommelier (wine connoisseur) has started in Western Cape, Gauteng, Kwazulu Natal
  • 500 learners will be enrolled in the Food Safety Programme (NQF Level 2)
Programme Director, tourism has made huge strides though these training programmes. In the last financial year, 2 654 youth graduated from these programmes and 1 837 were women. 20 of the top achievers on the Chef’s programme are currently placed in the Seychelles for further specialisation in French cuisine. Two of the 20 students are from the North West.

To those who have completed their tertiary studies, government offers internships programmes on various fields of study, where you are given experiential learning or on the job training. Government also provides bursaries to those who wish to further their studies and these are advertised in newspapers. Please make visit the departmental website on a regular basis to access such information.

Women are the backbone of the tourism industry, however most of them are still in the peripheries. The department has embarked on a leadership programmes to ensure that women are also represented in executive and leadership positions. 20 black women managers have been enrolled on a one-year Executive Development Programme, NQF Level 8, with the University of South Africa. 

This programme which started last July is fully sponsored by the department and is aimed at building strong business skills, strategic leadership, entrepreneurs and industrialists. Don’t you see yourself being one of these women in the future, a woman with strong business and leadership qualities? 

To our young leaders, tourism does not only provide employment opportunities but encourages people to become entrepreneurs as well. Platforms like the Youth Business Zone at the National Tourism Careers Expo provides this opportunity. The expo takes place in the Free State from 28 – 30 September this year. If possible please visit the NTCE and present your business idea, you never know, maybe your dream of becoming an entrepreneur might be realised. 

Economic benefits of all these programmes are shared with our SMMEs. During the period of the learnership, we contract local businesses to provide services like transport and accommodation. 
Tourism also provides business support interventions to tourism enterprises through a programme called the Tourism Incubator model. Though this model, the department contracts experienced business development advisors to mentor local business. The objective is to create viable tourism businesses that will create sustainable jobs and contribute to economic development in the identified nodes or communities. In the North West, the Incubator model was launched in the Sun City/ Pilanesberg area last year.

To those who own businesses, we also support tourism establishments through a rebate system when grading their accommodation establishments for star ratings. The objective for incentivising SMMEs is to ensure that more accommodation establishments are graded and conform to the recognised quality accommodation standards.

Education and knowledge empowers people to define their identity and make informed choices in life. Please collect as much information as possible on the opportunities that available from the exhibition stalls. A skilled workforce will enhance our country’s competitiveness globally.

Ke a Leboga