Young women in the Wild Coast Zithulele Village will continue receiving training in life and practical skills thanks to a R118 000 donation by the empowerment shareholder of Algoa FM to the Masiphakameni Youth Development Programme.
“The programme‘s intention to develop confidence in young rural women was the key selling point for me,” says Algoa FM non-executive director Zola Tshefu.
Masiphakameni is a programme run by Jabulani Rural Health Foundation.
Unemployed women from Zithulele and surrounds, in the former Transkei, attend an eight-month course which focuses on both “soft” and practical skills, according to programme facilitator Jenny Michell.
“What I love most about the Masiphakameni programme is the holistic approach to young women development through offering a broad range of training, life skills as well as new experiences and exposure,” adds Tshefu, who overseas the Algoa FM Empowerment Company, through which the funds have been channelled.
“I believe you may have all the education in the world but without self-confidence you cannot achieve much in life. That inner knowing that you have something to contribute to this world gives one unstoppable power,” she adds.
The programme includes afternoon placement with local NGOs or government institutions where the young women gain practical experience, and learn how to behave professionally in the work environment.
They also give back to the community through their work, says Michell.
Each participant receives a stipend for the work they perform. This can be used to support their families or saved towards paying for college or university.
“The benefit of this kind of investment in these young women goes beyond them as individuals, but also impacts their families and their villages, and the country stands to gain,” says Tshefu.
Funding provided from the Algoa FM Empowerment Company will help Masiphakameni to expand the courses it offers.
“We are planning to introduce a training programme called ‘Work 4 A Living’. It is a great course covering basics of financial literacy, work ethics, job preparation, taking responsibility for one’s own future and more,” says Michell.