Sept 2023 1st edition

Health skills development programme to empower KZN youth

The youth of uMshwathi Local Municipality in KwaZulu-Natal (KZN) are set to benefit from the Hub of Hope – a health and skills development programme for youngsters in Gcumisa and neighbouring communities in that municipality.KZN Youth

Deputy Health Minister, Dr Sibongiseni Dhlomo, in August presided over the launch of the Hub of Hope.

“The hub is aligned to the department’s broader youth support programme to empower young people with health information to make well-informed health choices and economic opportunities, to increase their skills and knowledge, and improved employability,” the department said.

The launch was organised in partnership with the KZN Department of Economic Development Tourism and Environmental Affairs (EDTEA), TB HIV Care, uMgungundlovu District Municipality, Small Enterprise Development Agency (Seda) and other public institutions.

The programme is implemented through DREAMS (Determined, Resilient, Empowered, AIDS-free, Mentored and Safe) programme.

DREAMS is an ambitious public-private partnership aimed at reducing rates of HIV among adolescent girls and young women (AGYW), decreasing teen pregnancy, keeping girls in school, reducing sexual and gender-based violence and equipping them with skills.

According to Dhlomo, apart from health services, the programme also offers skills development opportunities including basic computer training, baking, hairdressing, beauty technology, nail technology and bookkeeping.   

Most of these training opportunities targeted at out-of-school youths are accompanied by starter packs upon completion to enable them to become entrepreneurs.

The launch was attended by amongst others, District and Local Mayors, senior government officials from the South African Police Service, South African Social Security Agency, over 900 Masijabule High School learners, parents and members of the School  Governing Body (SGB).    –

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