Unemployment is a major issue in Port Alfred, but with 140 beneficiaries from various wards of Ndlambe Municipality receiving learnerships on Monday, there is hope on the horizon.
The beneficiaries have signed a 12 month contract and will be trained in the field of Energy and Water (EW) under the Sector Education and Training Authority (SETA).
Nokwazi Zwane from EW SETA delivered a presentation detailing what the beneficiaries should expect in the programme.
“We (EW SETA) are a skills development authority that is serving within SETA and we are only responsible for qualifications that are related to energy and water,” she said.
Zwane mentioned a variety of qualifications which beneficiaries might have after the completion of their learnership.
“Energy and Water SETA provides qualifications such as water processing, process controller, water treatment, water quality analyst, and electrical,” she said.
She further added that EW SETA’s scope of coverage includes renewable energy and water.
With the above mentioned qualifications Zwane told beneficiaries that some could work as solar geyser installers.
Even though she started by mentioning the fruits of the learnership as a form of motivation, Zwane also told applicants that it would not be a walkover.
“Before you obtain your certificates, you have to do 30% of theory and 70% of practicals in the workplace,” she said.
EW SETA staffers will be training and monitoring the beneficiaries.
Zwane regarded the structure of the programme as very advantageous to the beneficiaries. “Your chances of getting a job are very high. You will complete with the experience,” she said.
Although Ndlambe’s beneficiaries are unemployed youth, Zwane mentioned that they go beyond that.
“We are not only focusing on unemployed youth. We also focus on permanent staff with who have experience but no qualifications. You, the municipality, has those old employees with experience but with no qualifications. The municipality can apply for such people” she said.
“We are there to assist people obtain their qualifications that it will be easy to look for jobs.”
One of the EW SETA staff members, Siphiwe Zondo, said beneficiaries started at CTC College the day (Tuesday) after the meeting.