By Staff Writer
Eskom partnered with Kouga Local Municipality and New Generation Movement (NGM) to host the annual Kouga Youth in Energy Summit on Wednesday, 28 June wherein it shared information about careers and business opportunities that the youth can explore and seize in the energy sector.
In attendance were representatives from Kouga Local Municipality Council, the Department of Energy, the Department of Economic Development, Environmental Affairs and Tourism, the National Youth Development Agency, the Industrial Development Corporation, The Hope Factory, the Eastern Cape Development Corporation, The South African Young Nuclear Professionals Society and the youth from Hankey, Thornhill, Paternsie, Humansdorp, Sea Vista and Oyster Bay in the Kouga Local Municipality.
Participants in the summit addressed the youth, providing them with information across the energy value chain, in order to empower and inspire them to gear up for opportunities in the industry.
Eskom’s Acting General Manager for Nuclear New Build, Mr. Loyiso Tyabashe gave an overview of various careers that can be followed in the energy industry.
This encompassed diverse but complimentary fields including engineering, sciences, business, legal, communication, skilled crafts like fitters, electricians, plumbers, plant operators, carpenters, etc.
Mr. Loyiso Tyabashe said, “We are on a journey with Kouga Local Municipality, to seek means of getting youth in the area to acquire skills training so that they are in a position of readiness to participate meaningfully in future jobs and bidding activities related to mega projects in Kouga and South Africa as a whole. We have identified the Nelson Mandela Metropolitan University (NMMU) as a strategic partner in skills development for the energy industry. To this end, we have awarded 10 bursaries this year (2017) and will grow this number going forward.”
“In addition, the market needs entrepreneurs with sound business skills. Closer to home in Kouga, Eskom is one of the sponsors for New Generation Mindset (NGM) to develop young businesses (some of them youth owned) with the ultimate view that these businesses can contribute to economic development in Kouga and participate in the broader economy.” We dearly believe that this will be a sustainable solution going forward as youth is the future of our country,” Tyabashe said.
Eskom and the other participants had exhibitions where further information was shared and engagement took place with the youth. The youth engaged actively with the presenters during the questions and answer session.
They raised pertinent issues relating to challenges they face, areas where they need support and suggested solutions. This kind of engagement, it is hoped, will encourage youth development and give rise to vibrant businesses that contribute to Kouga’s economic growth and the broader socio-economy health of the province.