Forum has big plans for cooperation with mines

The leadership of the Unemployment Youth Forum is made up of Mr Sibusiso Nhlapo, Mr Veli Mogagabe, Ms Kelebogile Thebe and Mr Isaac Langa. The UYF is ready to take up the issue of unemployment with the mines in the area this year.
The leadership of the Unemployment Youth Forum is made up of Mr Sibusiso Nhlapo, Mr Veli Mogagabe, Ms Kelebogile Thebe and Mr Isaac Langa. The UYF is ready to take up the issue of unemployment with the mines in the area this year.

A local organisation called the Unemployment Youth Forum (UYF) is forging a closer working relationship with
the mines in the area this year.
‘The UYF is a non-profit organisation that focuses on advocating for youth employment, training and skills  development and business opportunities for youth-owned companies in the mines,’ says the organisation’s secretary
general, Mr Sibusiso Nhlapo.
According to him, the UYF was started near the end of 2015 and has been consulting with Harmony Gold, Sibanye
Gold and AngloGold Ashanti since 2016. It has been urging mine bosses to employ the youth of Merafong, in
particular.
‘In 2017, Sibanye Gold agreed to incubate 25 youth-owned businesses over five years. Bigtym Trading Pty, Lerula
Construction, Prudyskulk Pty, Kgaolo Zone Pty, Grant Converters and Njabulo Technical Pty are all from Merafong City and among the companies in the incubation programme,’ he says.

‘These companies were given an opportunity to trade and offer services to Sibanye Gold’s different divisions or  shafts. The knowledge they have gained through this action has assisted them in understanding the culture of the company and how business is conducted in the private sector, especially as they are used to doing business with the government.
Ms Melody Perumal (the vendor and transformation manager) heads the SMME incubation programme for Sibanye
Gold and acts as a coach, together with Mr Isaac Langa who is the advisor and mentor to the executive committee
of the Unemployment Youth Forum.
‘The Forum wishes to express its heartfelt gratitude to Sibanye Gold for the incubation programme and site. Although there may be challenges like the capital to fund projects awarded to SMMEs, they remain hopeful that there will be room for improvement in 2018
and beyond. ‘We all are aware that gold mining is drying up in Merafong and mining companies have started retrenching their labour force. This leads to more crime, idleness, desperation and poverty so we urge other mining companies to join in and help young people feed themselves and their families before we are declared a ghost town,’ he said.
In September last year, SPH Kundalila loaned the UYF a grader to clean high school sports grounds for a tournament at Relebogile High School in Khutsong. Tswasongu and Badirile also participated.

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