Youth urged to be changemakers in the workplace

As the second cohort of graduate trainees under Eswatini Youth Empowerment Programme is deployed

August 3, 2023

UNDP Deputy Resident Representative, David Omozuafoh, officiating at the EYEP certification ceremony.


As more organisations continue to support the country’s efforts to reduce youth unemployment, today, 12 institutions received 50 graduates to host under the Eswatinin Youth Empowerment Programme (EYEP). Representatives of the organisations were introduced to the graduates at a certification ceremony held at Eswatini Institute of Management and Public Administration (SIMPA), Matsapha. This followed a three-day induction training programme conducted by Catalyze Eswatini to prepare the graduates for the work environment. 


The first cohort of 55 graduates was deployed to 11 organisations in July, and they received their first stipend at the end of the month. EYEP targets to deploy 200 graduates by the end of August 2023.   


The host organisations for the second cohort include Eswatini Standards Authority (ESWASA), Small Enterprises Development Company (SEDCO), National Agricultural Marketing Board (NAMBoard), SiyeSwatini Transmagnific, Kwakha Indvodza, Ministry of Commerce Industry and Trade, Lusundvu Agricultural Academy, Women in Engineering, Theo Brands, Attorney G’s Office, and Eswatini Communications Commission (ECCOM). 


Speaking on behalf of the host organisations, Sonic Dlamini, the director of the NGO, Kwakha Indvodza, acknowledged the diverse skills that the graduates possess and challenged them to be changemakers in the workplace. Drawing from his personal experience, Dlamini said that while it is good to pursue fun activities, young people should also prioritise activities that advance the world. 


“I chose to participate in activities that change the world, such as climate change, social justice and challenging extractive industries,” said Dlamini. 


Youth graduate Nomfanelo Hlophe said the induction programme has helped them be self-aware, maximise their strengths and minimise their weaknesses. Expressing her gratitude to the host organisations for giving them a chance to acquire skills, she said the graduates are ready to put their best foot forward, channel positive thoughts when faced with challenges and prioritise assigned tasks accordingly. 


“With that said, we’re not perfect. We’ll make mistakes and misspeak at times, but we are excited and enthusiastic because we want to get the work done but don’t know how to express our thoughts in a way that would befit the workplace. So we ask that you be patient with us, lead us with love, and show us the way in our new positions,” she said.    


In response, UNDP Deputy Resident Representative David Omozuafoh expressed his appreciation to the host organisations adding that, without them opening their doors for the graduates, the programme would not succeed. He also urged the graduates to be great ambassadors of the programme, considering that EYEP received 2 800 applicants waiting for an opportunity to get graduate placements. 


“We hope you’ll grab this opportunity either to learn, have space to practise what you have learnt and add value,” he said, adding: “We expect that you will do very well.”  


The graduates will complete their placement programme in six months after which they can be retained by the host organisation or stand a better chance to get another job or start their business.