Government honours young achievers

Top student in the programme in the province Themba Monethi receiving his certificate from Deputy Minister of Communications, Stella Ndabeni Abrahams.

Many of them had never thought that one day they would be media practitioners, but on Friday November 25, a group of young people from Nyanga were honoured for their achievements by Deputy Communications Minister Stella Ndabeni Abrahams.

The group of 35 students had successfully completed the Film and Television Skills Programme, a Department of Communications initiative.

As part of its 2015 budget, the department committed to partnering with relevant stakeholders to train young people in online video editing software.

And the students’ excitement was evident when they were handed their results and certificates for completing the course, which carries an NQF level 5 qualification.

An equally excited Ms Ndabeni Abrahams said she had taken a chance on the students, and they did not disappoint her.

She said she was inspired by their commitment to improving their future.

“They realised that they are the best with whatever they have. They have never doubted their skills. We have delivered. We gave them weapons and tools. It is now up to them to deliver,” said Ms Ndabeni Abrahams.

She added the programme was aimed at up-skilling unemployed youth and graduates with television production skills, enabling them to work in the digital media environment.

Ms Ndabeni Abrahams said in its pilot year, the programme benefited 150 students and was rolled out at three centres in the Eastern Cape, Western Cape and Gauteng.

“This is the first of its kind in the country. In Nyanga we have to thank councillor Khaya Yozi for his visionary leadership. He made it possible for them. They need to go out and gain economic freedom,” she said.

She said some companies had confirmed that they would take on some of the students.

The partnership was concluded with MICT SETA, which then engaged with Atos to be the training provider.

Mr Yozi said more than 100 people applied to be part of the programme, and only 40 were selected, but only 35 continued with the programme.

“I am not happy with the five who dropped out. Those spaces should have gone to other people. This was not a joke, but a very serious programme. Our youths need to take opportunities with both hands,” he said.

Top student Themba Monethi has had his dream coming true. The 24-year-old student said he was grateful to be part of the programme.

“It was fantastic, top-class and an eye-opener but was not easy. We came here knowing nothing pertaining to media and film. But now I know how to operate a camera, sound, mic and editing. I can safely say I am in the media industry,” said Mr Monethi.

He commended the leadership shown by both the ministry and Mr Yozi. He said leaders need to level the playing field for the country’s youth.

Mr Monethi said he cannot wait to get a job. He said he was hopeful to get placement soon.

See page 12