Opportunity 9: Reflection and Analysis


Providing a multi-faceted package of support to young people

“Even the ants are [more] alive than me. They are always busy collecting food in preparing for tough times. … I am just like a statue”, wrote Thandiswa (not her real name) in her diary as a young unemployed woman in her twenties. Having grown up in Khayelitsha after her parents relocated from the former […]

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Posted on 20 Jun 2019

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Creating jobs and improving education at the same time

There’s a wonderful book by Dr Seuss that all parents should read to their children. It’s called Oh, the Places you’ll Go, written for young people as they set off on life’s exciting journey towards success (“98 and ¾ per cent guaranteed”!). But it’s not all breathlessly gung-ho. The book acknowledges that there are amazing […]

Posted on 8 Feb 2019

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David, Goliath and half a gig of data

With a third of young South Africans marginalised from work, training and employment opportunities – there are over 8 million young people itching for opportunity. As Shakira Maharaj points out, young people are ready to make the most of what they get.  This past weekend was a big one for South Africa – the last […]

Posted on 4 Feb 2019

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What it’s really like to be at school in South Africa

As a country, we have committed to greater access to education for all children. The importance of early childhood education (the first five years of a child’s life) to improve children’s capacity to learn and thrive is now firmly on the national agenda. Even the significance of prenatal care is making inroads in our attempt […]

Posted on 26 Nov 2018

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Youth will shape the South Africa of tomorrow – let’s get behind them today

Every January we as South Africans focus our full attention on the successes, and failures, of the education system as marked by the Matric results. We celebrate the individual shining examples of extraordinarily bright students, of inspiring principals that produce amazing results against all the odds, and take a step back to assess how we […]

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Posted on 17 Feb 2017

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Casting some light on the new 3 Stream Schooling System 2017

Over the last few months there has been talk of a new schooling system planned for South Africa. In January, a few online articles appeared but the detail has been lacking and equivocal. Through a discussion hosted by the Institute for Justice and Reconciliation (IJR) in February, we managed to unearth a little more. The […]

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Posted on 11 Apr 2016

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Five things to think about beyond matric results

Every January the whole country focusses in on a single number: the matric pass rate. For many this number comes to define the state of young people, and we tend to leave the conversation there. But for school-leavers, the matric results are not just the end of one journey, they are the start of a […]

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Posted on 7 Jan 2016

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The South African Child Gauge 2015: Youth – an opportunity to interrupt the intergenerational transmission of poverty

The 10th issue of the South African Child Gauge, focusing on the theme of youth and the intergenerational transmission of poverty, was released last week on the 10th of November [2015] by the University of Cape Town’s Children’s Institute.  It examines the situation of young people aged 15 – 24 and highlights the need for a range of interventions that continue to […]

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Posted on 16 Nov 2015

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Making employment in the non-profit sector a “first choice” for young people

I studied law and accounting at university, so I am as surprised as anyone to find myself, 12 years into my working life, having only worked for non-profit organisations (NPOs). What is even more surprising to me is that I am exactly where I am meant to be.  That being said, it appears to me […]

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Posted on 6 Mar 2015

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What promise does youth policy hold for transforming the situation of South Africa’s youth?

In October 2014, under the auspices of the United Nation’s Special Envoy for Youth, the First Global Forum on Youth Policies was hosted in Baku, Azerbaijan.[1] The aim of the conference was to bring together young activists and experts, development professionals, and government representatives to gauge progress made on the World Programme of Action for Youth […]

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Posted on 2 Feb 2015

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