Youth agency to focus on education

The National Youth Development Agency (NYDA) will shift its focus from financing entrepreneurs to educating the youth.

“We have shifted the core business of the NYDA away from enterprise finance and skills development towards education and skills development,” Deputy Minister in the Presidency Obed Bapela told reporters in Joburg today.

Bapela, who is a NYDA board member, said studies showed most young people in the country got their income from salaries and remittances.

“In fact, only 4.6% of young people between the ages of 15 and 24 derive their income from business-related activities.

“Salaries remain the main source of income for young people, which underscores the importance of employment as a source of livelihood for the youth of South Africa,” Bapela said.

The agency would no longer offer loan finance to entrepreneurs, but would instead grant finance combined with business development support and mentorship. The grant support programme would be between R1 000 and R100 000.

Due to financial constraints this meant about 37 000 young entrepreneurs would get help over the next financial year.

As part of the launch of youth month the agency would help drug rehabilitation and awareness centres countrywide.

“We acknowledge that more needs to be done in the struggle for a drug-free South Africa.”


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