UIP YES4YOUTH Internship Programme

At the behest of President Ramaphosa, ABSA Bank sponsored the YES4YOUTH Internship Programme to create jobs for the unemployed youth of South Africa. The project ran for a twelve month period between December 2019 and November 2020 and cost the sponsors R450K per month.

The project was coordinated locally by Catalyx who approached the UIP Company in late 2019 to confirm our participation. After a few hastily convened meetings, we agreed and so began the daunting task of recruiting, training, kitting out and managing one hundred and twenty interns who had no prior work experience. In hindsight and in view of the overwhelming success of the Project, this had to be one of the best decisions ever taken by the UIP Board of Directors.

By December 2019 a total of 120 interns were ready for deployment and in this regard we are grateful for the support we received from the local Councillor Musa Dlamini and the Ward 26 Youth Desk with the recruitment process. The interns were divided into four groups, each with a supervisor. Some were assigned to our security and cleaning service providers for further on the job training. Some were deployed as cleaners in the South Beach Precinct while others were assigned as Tourism and Street Ambassadors who acted as our ears and eyes on the ground. Together they proved a great boon to the South Beach Precinct and the City at large, during what was one of Durban’s safest, busiest and best managed festive seasons on record.

In many ways, the YES4YOUTH Internship proved to be a huge success and yielded positive results that far exceeded all expectations, so much so, that the highly visible and distinctively clad youth have now become a permanent part of the city’s landscape. The entire team performed admirably and worked diligently throughout the various Covid lockdown stages in 2020, leading both sponsors and project managers to commend the UIP Company for having managed the best run YES4YOUTH Project throughout South Africa.

Today, more than sixty percent of the interns are gainfully employed and form an integral part of the UIP’s Integrated Clean Up and By Law Enforcement Team together with Metro Police, Durban Solid Waste and the eThekwini Municipality. Currently this is the only such Integrated Operation countrywide, with a day and a night shift that operates seven days a week to make the Inner City environment a cleaner, safer, more liveable place while promoting a positive image of the city for the good of the collective.