Given the urgent need to attract youngsters into the logistics/supply chain sector, it comes as good news that Rhenus South Africa is giving 15 young people the opportunity to set a foot on the employment ladder in 2022 as part of the company’s involvement with the Youth Employment Service (YES) Programme. Rhenus South Africa is part of the Rhenus Group, a leading global logistics specialist with 37 500 employees working at 970 business sites around the world.
Youth unemployment is a South African scourge that has been escalating over the past decade. Today, 52 percent of individuals between the ages of 18 and 35 do not have meaningful work. With this in mind, the YES Programme was launched as a joint initiative by the South African government and private sector in 2018 to inspire youth employment and job creation.
The project assists young people with workplace experience through employment placement that includes mentoring and regular assessments to track progress. On completion, candidates receive a Curriculum Vitae and reference letter. According to Rhenus South Africa’s managing director Dirk Goedhart, 15 interns are being employed for a year.
“Youth are the most vulnerable in an economy where skills are required. This programme is a unique opportunity to get hands-on experience in the logistics sector. It is designed to enable participants to develop the necessary skills to launch their careers.”
Candidates are identified from around the country and following a stringent interviewing process, are then employed. Participants are exposed to Rhenus during a short induction course after which they are placed within the company in various departments.
According to Goedhart, Rhenus aims to implement the YES initiative on an annual basis. “YES is a comprehensive programme that Rhenus is proud to be associated with,” says Goedhart. “It affords young people the opportunity to change the course of their lives by delivering deep, systemic, and sustainable change while addressing the major challenge of unemployment.”
Rhenus South Africa has actively embraced skills development over the years. In 2019 and 2020, 33 young people concluded logistics learnerships with the company.