With unemployment in South Africa at an 11-year high, Trusted Interns, a platform that connects first-time job-seekers to employers, has launched a three-part campaign aimed at giving unemployed youth a chance in the job market.

The start-up has built a community of more than 40 000 graduates and matriculants who are eager to join the workforce. However, its data shows that a tragic lack of the basic resources needed to effectively acquire a job, such as data to use when applying and transport for interviews, acts as a major barrier to employment. The campaign, based on concepts of hope, access and opportunity, addresses these issues.

The company’s founder, Jaryd Raizon, said: “The problem extends beyond job creation. Unemployed youth in South Africa are disqualified from entering the workforce because they don’t have the tools they need to access the job market.”

Trusted Interns has partnered with leading change-makers such as Busisiwe Mavuso, the CEO of Business Leadership South Africa, and Khaya Dlanga, the chief marketing office of Rain Mobile, to work on instilling hope in the nation’s youth. 

According to The Quarterly Labour Force Survey, the number of discouraged work-seekers increased by 44 000 in October of 2019 and, with 58 out of every 100 16 to 24-year-olds being unemployed, this feeling is intensified in young people. “Before we can create access or opportunity, we must first re-instill hope,” said Raizon. The campaign, titled “Give The Youth A Chance” will start with videos of these inspiring individuals sharing their stories of triumph and success through adversity.

The platform’s engagements with its community indicated that the biggest barrier to getting a job is the transport money required to get to and from interviews. To help tackle this issue, Trusted Interns has partnered with Uber to provide thousands of rands worth of free rides to help deserving youth get to job interviews. 

Job seekers who wish to qualify for this benefit have to submit an application via the Trusted Interns platform. The public, SMMEs and corporates are also encouraged to #GiveTheYouthAchance. From January, people will be able to donate or sponsor Uber rides to successful candidates.

For the final and most important instalment of the campaign, namely opportunity, Trusted Interns is calling on South African businesses to make the real change by creating entry-level employment opportunities in their organisation. 

While many employers find the idea of hiring an intern burdensome, Trusted Interns is challenging this by encouraging companies to see the value in bringing first-time employees into their teams.
“First-time job seekers can add value to your organisation, both culturally and to your bottom line. With 60% of our population being youth, they understand and have insight into the largest single demographic in the country. We have found inexperienced youth to be an invaluable asset in our business,” said Raizon.

If the unemployment crisis in South Africa is to be resolved, it requires collective effort and contribution. 
You can get involved by visiting the Trusted Interns website, ww.trustedinterns.co.za, and following #GiveTheYouthAChance on Twitter. 

Jaryd Raizon is the founder and director of Trusted Interns.

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