Helping SA youth build their careers

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Relying on government to deliver jobs is not the only answer to SA?s youth
unemployment problem. Young people need to take ownership of their own
careers and the careers sa website is a good place to start.


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When well-known radio personality Gareth Cliff started out in the media
industry as a gofer and assistant producer many years ago, the job paid badly
and the hours were terrible. He candidly says that he hated it and nearly gave
up. Today he is where he is because he stuck at it.

"Nobody is out there rooting for you to make it in your career. The only thing
that can make that happen is your own desire to do so,' he says in the
foreword to the CareersSA.net Guide.
South Africa?s young people need all the help - and advice - they can get.
The latest statistics paint a sombre picture - youth unemployment in the country
is currently the third highest in the world. Over 70% of unemployed people are
between the ages of 15 and 29 - and the majority are female.
"The high unemployment rate for South African young people is a big
concern,' says Samantha Crous, Regional Director Africa and Benelux at the Top
Employers Institute, publishers of the CareersSA.net Guide and website
www.careerssa.net. "Young people, whether they are university graduates or
not, face huge challenges in the workplace, in trying to get jobs and establish
careers.'
Unemployment has decreased marginally to 24% in 2013 but this figure is
still high - try to imagine seven million people without jobs. Hardly surprisingly,
unemployment has featured prominently on the agenda of most political parties
taking part in the general elections in May with the DA promising six million "real
and permanent jobs' should a DA government come into power and the ANC
saying it will create six million job "opportunities" primarily for young people,
over the next five years.
But there is every indication that these promises are making very little
impression on young people - voter apathy is extremely high among the so-
called "born-frees', the young people who were born after the country?s
transition to democracy in 1994.
According to the Independent Electoral Commission, less than 25% of 18-
19-year-olds are registered to vote. "Young people are signalling a lack of trust
in political parties to make a real difference to their lives. But it is important to
point out here that they are not alone,' says Crous.

She says that there is much that young people can do to take ownership of
their own careers. The

target="_new"> Careers SA website
has a lot of information available to help young people find the right company
and help them launch their career. Helpful resources include online surveys
about skills and personality types, to information about which top companies to
work for in each industry and the kinds of jobs that are available.
"Although a big factor is the lack of available jobs, young people can still do
a lot to increase their chances of success and make themselves more
marketable. There is always work for someone who is eager, motivated and
willing to work hard,' says Crous.
"Knowing where to find a job is one thing, but the various nuances on how
to find one and how to fit into the corporate world can be overwhelming. That's
where careerssa.net helps - we have all the job hunting tools graduates need
in one place. From what an employment contract can look like, CV tips and
templates, alternatives to corporate jobs and more.'
Cliff says the secret to success is doing what you are passionate about. "Go
out there and find what it is you love, and do it. If you love cooking, find a way
to make it in the culinary industry - even if it means working as a busboy in a
horrible hotel for months. The story any amazingly successful person will tell you
is the same: if you do what you love, and you?re good at it, you?ll end up making
money as a by-product of that success. Money is just a way of recognising
success, it isn?t success itself.'
What do you think?
Do you think hard work and desire is all you need to get your dream job?

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