In conversation with NYDA CEO, Waseem Carrim
Waseem Carrim is the Chief Executive Officer of the National Youth Development Agency (NYDA), a government structure located in the Presidency. The NYDA is responsible for designing policies and programmes to respond to youth challenges in South Africa, and lobbies and advocates for the mainstreaming of youth development.
Carrim believes that the current generation sees integration and globalisation not as threats but as opportunities for education, exploration, employment and exchange. This generation sees differences, pluralism and diversity not as a curse, but as a great gift.
When he was just 26 Carrim was recruited to become the Chief Financial Officer of the NYDA, making him one of the youngest CFOs in the public sector. Under his leadership, the NYDA achieved three consecutive clean audits from the Auditor-General. He was named as one of 35 chartered accountants by the South African Institute of Chartered Accountants in 2016.
In 2017, he was appointed as the CEO of the NYDA and has driven a culture change at the Agency. Together with the Presidency he designed the Presidential Youth Employment Intervention.
Since then, the NYDA has continued to move from good to great. During the 2019/2020 Financial Year, the NYDA under this young CEO’s leadership achieved its sixth consecutive clean audit report, reinforcing the NYDA’s commitment to good governance. The Agency also achieved 23 out of 24 planned targets for the financial year. This translates to a 96% performance achievement.
“Among our key highlights of the performance achievement we are indeed proud to have provided over 1 100 youth-owned enterprises in the township and rural economy with grant funding to start up their businesses through the NYDA Grant Program. These youth-owned enterprises have gone on to create and sustain more than 5 000 jobs,” said Carrim.
This statement comes against the backdrop of the serious economic and social challenges faced by the country, fiercely compounded by the Covid-19 pandemic.
“Young people disproportionately bear the pain of these economic and social challenges, and youth unemployment remains one of the foremost challenges that democratic South Africa faces,” Carrim added.
Despite the many challenges faced by the youth, he believes that many young people have the energy and willingness to want to change their lives, and he continues to fight for the youth of this country to access any opportunities that are available to them.
The NYDA has enlarged its footprint by establishing 15 new service delivery channels in mainly rural areas.
Carrim would like to see both the private and public sector rally behind the economic recovery plan announced by government to ensure that young people are placed front and centre of the plan.
He believes that together as a nation we can achieve much change; he is confident that the future is brighter than the past, and that our best days still lie ahead of us.
He concluded by expressing his appreciation to the third NYDA Board of Directors, Audit Committee, Executive Authority, Portfolio Committee on Women, Youth, Persons with Disabilities and all NYDA employees for their efforts, oversight and support in achieving another clean audit outcome.
Why the NYDA was established
The National Youth Development Agency (NYDA) is a South African-based agency established primarily to tackle the challenges that the nation’s youth are faced with. The agency was established by an Act of parliament, Act number 54 of 2008. The institution was established to be a single, unitary structure for addressing youth development issues at national, provincial and local government levels. The Act instructs the agency to promote a uniform approach to youth development by all organs of state, the private sector and nongovernmental organisations.
The NYDA Act (2008) mandates the NYDA to develop an Integrated Youth Development Strategy (IYDS) for South Africa and initiate, design, co-ordinate, evaluate and monitor all programmes that aim to integrate the youth into the economy and society in general. These initiated programmes should aim to alleviate poverty, assist urban and rural development, and combat crime, substance abuse and social decay among the youth.
NYDA as a Thought Leader
This element characterises one of NYDA’s strategic objectives. As a thought leader, we need to understand where our clients are in the spectrum of new ideas in order to influence and support them with innovative and impactful content. The IYDS is located within a rich legislative and policy framework, defined by the South African Constitution (Act Number 108 of 1996) as the supreme law of the country and guided by an internationally informed rights-based approach to growth and development. Thereafter, the IYDS responds to a number of pieces of legislation and policy, some more influential than others.
A credible, capable and activist development agency that is responsive to the plight of South Africa’s youth.
To mainstream youth issues into society, and
To facilitate youth development within all sectors of society.
Integrity and Honesty
Respect and Humility
NYDA key achievements for the financial year 2019/2020
During the year 2019/20, the NYDA had 23 Key Performance Indicators, of which 11 were met and 11 were met and exceeded. Only one target was not achieved. The organisation therefore achieved 96% of the planned targets in the APP.
• A total of R115 549 000 of funds was sourced from the public and private sectors to support youth development programmes, and this was because of the stakeholders’ willingness to partner with the NYDA.
• A total of 10 job partnerships were established with the public and private sector.
• A total of 10 Market Linkage partnerships were established with the public and private sectors.
• A total of 1 136 youth-owned enterprises were supported through the Grant Programme.
• A total of 20 730 beneficiaries were supported with business development support services offered by the NYDA.
• The number of jobs created and sustained through supporting business entrepreneurs was 5 013.
• The number of jobs facilitated through placements in job opportunities was 14 021.
• A total of four business centres were established.
• The number of young people trained to enter the job market was 74 383, which exceeded the target due to partnerships with municipalities where NYDA opened new district offices.
• A total of 19 Government Departments partnerships were established to implement National Youth Services (NYS) at National level.
• A total of 30 Government Departments partnerships were established to implement NYS at Provincial level.
• A total of 66 Government Departments partnerships were established to implement NYS at local level.
• A total of 106 partnerships were established to implement NYS with civil society and the private sector.
The outbreak of Covid-19 has impacted a lot of enterprises globally and locally. Youth-owned enterprises have not been spared from this. A number of interventions were announced by government and the private sector to help SMME mitigate the impact of the pandemic.
The NYDA therefore also deemed it appropriate to provide a response for youth-owned enterprises. It provided a Relief Fund to youth-owned enterprises for a period of three months, and several youth-owned enterprises were saved.
About the 1000 Youth Owned Enterprises in a 100 days project
As youth unemployment figures continue to rise, government has indicated that more action needs to be taken. About 36% – 20 million – of the population is under the age of 35, yet more than 30% of young South Africans aged between 15 and 24 are not in any form of employment, education or training.
During the State of the Nation Address 2020, President Cyril Ramaphosa announced that government would be implementing the Presidential Youth Employment Intervention programme (PYEI), which will focus on six key areas; these include creating pathways for young people to be party to the country’s economic growth. The government continues to actively support youth entrepreneurship, and thus The National Youth Development Agency (NYDA), in partnership with the Presidency and the Department of Small Business Development, implemented the 1000 Youth Owned Enterprises in 100 days project through the NYDA grant funding programme, as part of the PYEI.
Beneficiaries’ letters of appreciation
COVID 19 RELIEF GRANT TO GUGULAMAMA TRADING
DEAR SECUNDA TEAM
It is our honour and privilege to get support from the NYDA team and others, as we are part of the economic segment as small businesses and fighting the battle of Covid-19.
We really appreciate the contribution; it means a lot to us as entrepreneurs, and we assure you that we will use it wisely for the operation of business and fulfilling our client needs.
A positive report will be forthcoming in due course, since our company got permit to operate. GUGULAMAMA TRADING is specialising in the following services: business consultation, registration, supply and construction. Below I have attached one of the projects I have done.
Mr Joseph. Lucky Shabangu
Subject: Letter of Appreciation for COVID 19 relief Grant
Thank you for your generous contribution, as Thatha Solutions Projects (Pty) Ltd acknowledged and received the Covid-19 Relief Grant of R10 000 for salaries.
We look forward to working with your organisation in the future. Best Regards
THABO MOSOLE (MANAGING DIRECTOR)
Cell No: 073 200 8713
Contact Details: 073-200-8713 | 073-063-1615 |Email: [email protected] |263 Section C, Botshabelo 9781 | PO BOX 4526, Botshabelo 9781
MASAGI TRADING AND PROJECTS (PTY) LTD.
Re: Acknowledgement and appreciation of the Covid-19 Relief Fund.
This letter serves to acknowledge the receipt of the Covid-19 Relief Fund to the value of R7 850 as per the government initiative.
I deeply appreciate the assistance as I will be able to continue to run and grow the business.
Thank you Very Much.
LETTER OF APPRECIATION
I would like to express an avalanche of gratitude for the NYDA grant of R49 305.06 that I have been awarded through the NYDA 1000 Youth Enterprises in 100 Days programme. It is a great privilege for me and my company MTHIMUNYE CONSOLIDATED PROJECTS (PTY) LTD to be considered for this initiative.
I used to be among those people who thought that the NYDA was impractical, but now I have a different view because I have been proven otherwise, and I know that because of people like you, Precious Nkosi Mahlangu, this country is moving forward. I really appreciate the approval of my grant and also the follow-ups that you did, and the words of encouragement you gave to me — you really displayed true leadership capabilities.
You constantly devote your time to the interest of the youth, and for that I applaud you without any remorse, the level of gratitude I have cannot be overemphasized. I did not know you until two weeks ago when you did a follow-up on my application, however in that limited time you managed to help me with the grant applications, and not only that, I also got mentorship, something that my business and I will value for a very long time. I also wish to extend my gratitude to the entire NYDA Emalahleni branch.
On behalf of my company, I am grateful for the help I got from NYDA and make my promise that my company will be a success and play a role in the suppression of the high rate of youth unemployment.
MTHIMUNYE CONSOLIDATED PROJECTS (PTY) LTD.
NYDA Covid-19 Youth Relief Fund
This year has been challenging for many youth-owned SMMEs in the country, and as a micro business we have not been immune to the impact of the novel Covid-19. The impact of the pandemic has put operational and financial constraints on the business.
On behalf of JK Foods (Pty) Ltd I would like to thank and appreciate the NYDA for awarding the business a Covid-19 Youth Relief Fund to the value of R10 000 for operational expenses.
Lastly, I would like to thank the NYDA Polokwane Branch for their continued assistance, support, and patience.
Facebook/IG @ JK Foods SA
Ms. Kgodiso Lebea
CEO: JK Foods (Pty) Ltd
SUBJECT: LETTER OF APPRECIATION FOR THE COVID-19 RELIEF GRANT.
I am writing this letter, acknowledging my company NAPEKUNENE STEEL WORKS receiving the Covid-19 relief grant of R8 669.10, I would like to thank the NYDA office and all the other stakeholders involved.
What would have been a dire situation for my newly born empire, has turned into a milestone thanks to the funds that have been made available to assist us. These funds did not only benefit the organisation, they allowed my employees to survive from the compensation amount they received. We have used the rest of the funds to venture into Covid-19 related production. This will help in fighting the spread of the virus and ensure that our organisation continues to operate during this uncertain time. We will adhere to the basics of the funding rules by sending you a comprehensive update on what the seed you have planted into my organisation is turning into. We thank you for all the support you give us and hope you will contact us with any question you might have or even just to engage with us as you.
The initiative you started was a much-needed one and will bring about success stories; as a company we are looking forward to learning from the current situation, and growing with structures like the NYDA business support. The future of our youth-owned businesses is in good hands with a powerful support structure. Thank you in abundance.
LETTER OF APPRECIATION FOR GRANT VOUCHER
Dear NYDA Team
The Managing Director of Thandikhwezi Training and Supplies T/A Multi Wise Technologies, would once again like to take this opportunity to say thank you for a Grant Funding of R49 906 for equipment given to us by NYDA. I believe that it will make the business grow stronger than before. I would also like to thank the NYDA staff for being so helpful throughout the application process.
I really appreciate what NYDA has done for me and I’m also going to make sure that I don’t disappoint them by making sure that the business creates more job opportunities.
Mr. K. Luthuli (Managing Director)
Other beneficiaries of the NYDA
Nomsa Nhlapo, 24, from Tsakane in Gauteng, has completed her BCom Honours in Econometrics.
She is currently placed at the ETDP SETA, under the Performance, Monitoring and Evaluation unit, where her responsibilities involve collecting raw data, analysing and interpreting it to achieve findings.
This opportunity was accessed through the NYDA Jobs Database and Matching Service. Nomsa submitted her CV to the NYDA after she was informed by a friend about the agency. She subsequently enrolled on the Jobs Preparedness Training, and was later granted an opportunity to work for the EDTP SETA.
Nomsa’s future aspiration is to further her studies by pursuing a Master’s Degree in Financial Economics. The reason she has set this goal is because of her underprivileged background wherein education is perceived as the only solution out of poverty.
Olu Sifiso Klaas, 23, from Ashton in the Western Cape, is the founder of Klaasm Trading Enterprise (PTY) LTD, a manufacturing and repairing company that currently employs seven people on a full-time basis and three on a temporary basis.
The aspiring entrepreneur learnt about the NYDA on the internet when he was searching for possible funding institutions that would assist his business. After reading about the agency, Olu approached the NYDA Cape Town branch for further information on how he could be supported.
The branch enrolled him on the Business Management Training, which he completed successfully and was eligible to apply for the NYDA Grant Funding. The NYDA assisted Klaasm Trading Enterprise (PTY) LTD with financial support to buy material and working equipment.
The Western Cape-based young entrepreneur would like to decrease the statistics of youth unemployment in South Africa and contribute to boosting the country’s economy. He aims to expand his business into other provinces as well as operate outside of South Africa.
“To young people, let us chase our dreams. Do something today, that your future self will thank you for,” said Klaas.
Zandile Mguli, 29, is from Gugulethu, Cape Town in Western Cape. Raised by her mother and her younger sisters, her dream was to start her own business so that she would be able to assist her mother, who is the sole breadwinner. She approached the NYDA Cape Town Branch to enquire about the products and services offered by the agency.
“I was advised at a workshop held at ICYE that the NYDA offers grants to young entrepreneurs like myself who need assistance with establishing their businesses. I then visited the NYDA Cape Town Branch and the assistance from the team was of high order. The staff was very helpful, attentive and responsive,” said Mguli.
She went through the process of EDP training and applying for the NYDA Grant Funding to buy business equipment and merchandise. She now runs a small business called Fish Anchor and currently employs one young person on a permanent basis and a temp. She intends to employ more youths and move her business to an industrial area around Cape Town.
When asked about her future goals are, Mguli said, “I would like to own a shop in one of the malls and all over the province.”
“To young entrepreneurs and youth in general, believe in what you want to achieve: go and get it, as it won’t come to you. Be consistent and you will get better results. Anything is possible,” Zandile concluded.
Sibani Engineering is a science and engineering-orientated organisation that offers waste management services, which include general as well as hazardous waste disposal, scrap metal and recycling of polyurethane waste.
Mpande Masondo started the company after taking note of the high demand for hazardous waste management services in his community. He was still a trainee metallurgist at Anglo Coal at the time. Although Masondo used his own money to establish the company, the young entrepreneur still needed more capital to meet the high demand for his services. He then approached the NYDA Emalahleni Branch for further financial assistance. The NYDA assisted Sibani Engineering with grant funding to purchase skip bins, which were to be placed at various mines.
Masondo approached many mines where he intended to collect waste products. The company has since created 18 permanent employment opportunities and has the potential to create more.
Tlotlego Handcrafts and Prich BlackCotton thrive, thanks to hard work and Grant Funding
Tlotlego Handcrafts was established in 2016 by Ike Lekgoro, 32, from the Ga-Nchabeleng area in Sekhukhune District Municipality in Limpopo. Lekgoro received the NYDA Grant Funding to purchase industrial sewing machinery.
He approached the NYDA Groblersdal District Office to request financial assistance and went through the screening process to assess if his business was eligible for the requested funding. After a successful assessment, his grant application was approved.
The high level of unemployment rate is what drove him to pursue his passion, and Tlotlego Handcrafts was born as a result.
Initially, Lekgoro started with handcrafting neck-pieces, earrings, sandals and handbags. He was criticised when he roamed the streets in an effort to sell his items, but he did not give up.
Today he has a well-established company that operates in Burgersfort with quality products such as shoes, bags and leather wallets.
Two vibrant aspiring young entrepreneurs from Mpumalanga are the owners of Mandi and Prich BlackCotton, an establishment that specialises in designing and sewing of personalised accessories.
Mandisa Bianca Mnisi obtained her Level 2 Certificate in Design and Craft-Fashion from a college in Mpumalanga. With Prechard Laureen Shiloane’s savings, the pair was able to purchase material to start their business. They identified a market in Mpumalanga, particularly in the Ehlanzeni Region, after carefully conducting their research.
They started manufacturing backpacks, targeting pre-schools, teenagers, youth and adults. Due to high demand of their products, the young aspiring entrepreneurs approached the NYDA Mbombela Branch for financial assistance. The agency approved a Grant Funding for the partners to purchase sewing machines and stock. They were further assisted with a Financial Management Voucher to help them with their finances.
The company has since grown to such an extent that they continuously receive orders from various provinces, including Limpopo, Gauteng and KwaZulu-Natal.
Jabulani Molefe from Ventersdorp in North West started his business, J Allegiant Printing, as a source of generating income for himself when he was still a student at one of the country’s tertiary institutions.
His realisation of the need for his services in the community influenced his decision to continue with the business on a full-time basis. J Allegiant Printing offers customised printing services of items including mugs, caps, T-shirts, key rings, mouse pads and many others. Initially, he would outsource the printing services, but he reinvested in his own business by purchasing a printing machine and computer.
His clients continuously propose additional services that they would like to access as the business enjoys growth. The young aspiring entrepreneur responded to the demands of his clients. However, the plea meant that Jabulani had to add more equipment In order to effectively deliver on his promise.
He then approached the NYDA for financial assistance. The agency enrolled him on the Business Management Training (Start Your Business) Course, which he has applauded for assisting him to run his business better. The NYDA subsequently supported Jabulani with a Grant Funding to acquire the necessary machinery.
Beauty Sandt from Kathu in the Northern Cape Province is a qualified beautician who turned her passion into business upon completing her studies.
She began with operating the business Bontleful Beauty Spa at her parents’ home until her clientele grew and she could no longer attend to all the needs of her customers. Beauty decided to seek assistance through the NYDA Kimberley Branch in order to improve her services.
The agency approved a Grant Funding for Sandt to buy hair products and equipment for her business, which employed two young people at the time.
Sandt has managed to move her business from her parents’ backyard to Kathu Mall in the Northern Cape. She has joint ventures with other companies for wellness programmes, and her business has further expanded its staff capacity to five young people she works with full-time.
Bontleful Beauty Spa now services Khathu-based clientele only, but Sandt aims to expand to serve the entire Northern Cape.
Kutloano Mokoena, 23, from Bayswater in Bloemfontein, is a Business Management graduate who obtained her qualification from Motheo TVET College. She is the founder of Mristo Soaps, a manufacturing company that specialises in cleaning detergents for households and industrial purposes.
She visited the NYDA Bloemfontein Branch after being encouraged by one of her customers. The branch enrolled her on both the Generate Your Business Idea (GYI) and Start Your Business (SYI) trainings. Kutloano received her first Voucher for Financial and Accounting Systems.
The agency further assisted the young aspiring entrepreneur with a Grant Funding to purchase business equipment as well as the Business Plan Voucher.
Trudy Windy Mkansi is a 30-year-old young woman who established her own business after completing her Postgraduate Diploma in Business Management.
Ambesha Africa (Pty) Ltd is her company, which manufactures handcrafted patio furniture, lounge suites and swing chairs. Mkansi operates her business in Riversands and has a branch in Kyalami, Gauteng. The NYDA assisted the young aspiring entrepreneur with financial support for her business. She received a Grant Funding to purchase business material and equipment.
Her first encounter with the agency was through social media, when one young person expressed their words of gratitude to the NYDA Johannesburg Branch on Facebook. She then visited the same branch to access further information. The branch advised her to submit all required documents, which she did, and her Grant Funding was approved.
The company currently employs four permanent staff members as well as four temps.
Siseko Lisbon, 30, is from Port Elizabeth in Eastern Cape. His dream was to start his own business so that he would be able to make a living for himself, his father and his six siblings. He heard about the NYDA from social media and approached the NYDA Port Elizabeth Branch to enquire about the products and services that are offered by the agency.
“I was advised by one of the consultants at NYDA that the agency offers grants to young entrepreneurs like myself who need assistance with establishing their businesses. I then visited their branch in Port Elizabeth and the assistance from the team was pleasant and beneficial. The staff was very helpful, attentive and responsive,” said Lisbon.
He went through the process of Business Management Training and applied for the NYDA Grant Funding. He used the funding to buy business equipment such as chairs, tables, boards, laptops and stationery. Lisbon’s business is called Sawbrious Educational Academy, which offers trainings and tutorial sessions. He currently employs three young people on a full-time basis and six are temps. Lisbon intends to grow his business in the future.
For more information, visit www.nyda.gov.za or phone 087 158 4742