To help address youth unemployment and to lower barriers that prevent young people from entering the food supply chain industry, FoodForward SA launched its Youth Internship Programme (YIP), in May 2019.
Thanks to our partnership with DQ Staffing Solutions and because of the support of Woolworths, the Industrial Development Corporation (IDC) and our donors, we were able to welcome our fourth group of interns on Monday, 31 May.Our SETA-accredited programme runs over six months. During the first week of each month, interns undergo intensive theoretical training. This is followed by three weeks of practical training at our warehouse.
Our new group of five interns will be exposed to a rigorous and exciting curriculum. The first module serves as an induction and covers relevant topics such as workplace readiness, food safety, managing self-development and communication. Modules 2 to 4 delve deeper into business principles, occupational health issues, documentation handling and topics specific to warehousing and logistics.
Later this month, we will also welcome:
- Cohort 5 (Johannesburg): 14 June 2021
- Cohort 6 (Durban): 21 June 2021.
While this will be the second and third group of cohorts for our Johannesburg and Cape Town branches, respectively, our Durban branch is very excited to welcome their very first group of interns (Cohort 6).
We are incredibly proud that, to date, our YIP has a 100% completion rate. Since the programme’s inception two years ago, we have trained 16 interns and absorbed six into various positions at FoodForward SA.
Of the six interns who are now permanent FoodForward SA employees, two are general workers, one is a warehouse supervisor, one is an operations administrator, one is a receiving and despatch clerk and one is a beneficiary organisation co-ordinator (interim position). We are also in regular contact with our supply chain partners to help place those interns who have not received employment opportunities.
Youth unemployment currently stands at a record 74,7%. Through our Youth Internship Programme, we not only get the opportunity to help reduce unemployment, but we also get to support four of the United Nations’ Sustainable Development Goals!