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Bolt and Harambee partner to support youth unemployment

Bolt, South Africa’s fastest growing ride-hailing platform, has partnered with Harambee Youth Employment Accelerator, a not-for-profit enterprise that tackles youth unemployment at scale by connecting young unemployed South African’s to work and skilling opportunities.

“Our partnership with Harambee, made possible via the Bolt for Business platform, supports Bolt’s vision of driving progress helping young South Africans access work opportunities across the country,” says Gareth Taylor, regional manager for Bolt in Southern Africa.

Harambee’s Breaking Barriers – Transport report confirms that access to transport and transport costs are one of the biggest financial barriers to employment, made worse by apartheid-led geographic inequality that sees lower-income groups still living further away from jobs and paying more for transport to get to work than more affluent groups. This is why enabling access to transport is one of the key factors in overcoming poverty in South Africa, where nearly 60% of youth are unemployed.

An entry-level worker living in Soweto and earning the legislated minimum wage of R3,500 per month working in Johannesburg would spend R672 on transport, leaving them just R2,828 for the rest of the month for rent, food, and other basic requirements.

“The partnership with Bolt has contributed to the success of many Harambee candidates enabling them to timeously reach and attend job interviews and contract signings,” says Kuben Nair, Chief Brand Officer of Harambee.

“Our offices in Johannesburg and Cape Town have come to depend on the Bolt service to support work seekers respond quickly to employment opportunities, as many need to take multiple taxi rides to get to interviews, further increasing expense and time spent on transport.” he says.

Vuyokazi Ngcongo, a 27 year old from Germiston, has been battling to find employment the last few years – with the pandemic making things even more difficult for her. She finally managed to secure her first interview in several years with iStore in August 2021 but lacked the funds to get herself to the interview. Luckily, Harambee’s partnership with Bolt came to the rescue, providing her with vouchers to get her there safely and on time – and she got the job!

“This partnership between Bolt and Harambee is a long-term investment in connecting unemployed young people with work,” Taylor says. “It’s only through understanding the very real challenges faced by job-seekers, such as the real high costs of just applying for a job and going for interviews, that South Africa can start to effectively address its unemployment crisis.”

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