Construction company, Databuild has partnered with real estate investor, Actis to offer training to 300 young people selected from different community-based organisations in the informal settlement around the Garden City Mall in Nairobi, Kenya. Of the 130 students who completed the training, 46% succeeded in securing employment after graduation.
The Databuild partner Arc Skills project tackles the shortages in the construction industry by providing training and specialist skills development solutions.“An investment in the training and development of unemployed people in these communities goes a long way towards improving their quality of life over the long term, while simultaneously contributing towards the growth and quality of the construction industry,” said Databuild CEO, Morag Evans.
On the other hand, Arc Skills sponsored by the Motheo Construction Group trained 60 unemployed youth at three training sites in Gauteng. Following the completion of the training, 13 of the learners used their newly acquired skills in bricklaying, plastering, painting, glazing and carpentry to start their own business together, establishing Simunye Trading Construction.
Arc Skills closely mentored the partners in their entrepreneurial journey, providing them with business coaching and support, as well as marketing and branding assistance. They were awarded their first contract by Mokgolokwane Civils to build 20 low-cost houses valued at R1,960,000.
“At the start of their journey with Arc Skills, these young people, all of whom are under the age of 35, had no previous construction experience. Today, Simunye Trading Construction is making a meaningful impact in their respective communities by helping to create numerous job opportunities for other unemployed youth,” said Arc SKills Divisional Manager,Louwrens De Bruyn.
Evans urges more players in the construction industry to invest in programmes such as those offered by Arc Skills. “No one can argue that enabling developers and contractors to complete their projects successfully while changing lives for the better plays a critical role in helping to alleviate South Africa’s unemployment crisis. Who wouldn’t want to invest in a win-win solution for all parties?” she said.