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Learnership youth are paid stipends, we argue for higher rates at KeepClimbing.

How Much Do Self-sustaining Learnership Youth Need to Survive?

Financial challenges caused by low stipends can lead to high dropout rates in learnership programs, undermining their effectiveness.

Does Struggling on a Learnership Youth Budget Help Stop Poverty and Inequality?

Understanding how low stipends affect a learnership youth budget can help policymakers and organizations improve support for unemployed learners.

Living on the Edge: The Learnership Youth Budget Challenge for 18.2 Learnerships

learnership youth

18.2 learnerships are designed for unemployed individuals who do not have a contract with a company when the learnership begins.

These programs aim to provide practical work experience and theoretical training to help participants gain skills and qualifications, enhancing their employability.

Organizations and employers can play a role in addressing the low stipend issue by offering additional support and resources to unemployed learners on 18.2 learnerships.

Creating awareness about the financial struggles of youth in learnership programs can drive change and lead to more sustainable solutions.

Companies must address the issue of low stipends to ensure that youth in their learnership programs focus on their training without financial stress.

Many youth in learnership programs struggle to manage their finances due to inadequate stipends that don’t match the cost of living.

Low stipends in learnership programs can significantly impact the youth budget, making it challenging for young people to cover their basic needs.

How much do you spend on learnership stipends when taking on unemployed youth?

Most organisations justify stipends below R4000 per month with ‘we’re providing a vital opportunity for an unemployed person to become qualified and job-experienced.’

This is true, but why must learners suffer for this apparently virtuous opportunity that is fully refundable and attracts additional BEE points and tax rebates?

Learnership Youth Stipends and Challenges

Learnerships and apprenticeships are no longer pro-poor, meaning they are not being used to facilitate an unqualified, unemployed individual from a marginalised background into the space of the qualified and employable.

For example, where do youth who had to take on the care of their siblings and who lost their parents and grandparents, go?

In 2015, Stats SA’s General Household Survey showed that there are about 90 000 children in 50 000 child-headed households.

While this figure is not large in relation to the total number of children in the country, this is still a cause for concern.

Child-headed households are at risk of having to cope without parental care or regular income and are located in areas where services are poor.

In addition, this vulnerable group has to deal with emotional strain and is more likely to be abused and exploited. (Parliament)

Learnership Youth Stipends and Sustainability

how do learnerships help unemployed youth article

Learners are responsible for food, travel, toiletries and attire.

Those on learnerships in corporate spaces are under additional pressure because of the emphasis on appearance and cultural fit.

For most, this is their first experience in a formal workspace.

They have no suitable clothes and struggle to get started on a confident note.

At the next level, we have learners who need to relocate in order to take up the opportunity.

SETAs have issued relocation allowances in the past as they understood challenges faced, particularly by black learners.

Unfortunately, employers often lack this knowledge and sensitivity – regardless of their own colour.

There appears to be an assumption that black people can afford to live on less as they have a ‘community’ to support them and live cheaply in townships.

How else do you explain paying someone R1 500 per month for full-time work – even if they are only a ‘learner?’

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    Leonie Hall

    Leonie Hall, disruptive thinker and dynamic strategist, is an expert in education, development, quality management and innovation. She has spoken at local and international conferences; and currently works as an independent consultant and content developer. Contact Leonie for a consultation.

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    Learnership Youth Budget: Surviving on Peanuts Now?