Fri, May 27, 2022

Youth disillusioned by job hunting or unsuccessful at finding further education and training should consider their other alternatives.

Find Your Freedom The Youth Entrepreneurship Programme

In 2000 government announced the establishment of the Umsobomvu Youth Fund, out of the proceeds of the demutualisation of Old Mutual and Sanlam.  The fund started operating in 2001, with the mandate to facilitate the involvement of young people in economic activities.  Umsobomvu implements a youth enterprise programme, providing both financial and non-financial support to youth enterprises.

The youth entrepreneurship programme has three major projects:

  • Enterprise funding.
  • Micro-finance.
  • Business development services.

An estimated 700 SMMEs and 3 640 micro-enterprises will benefit from these projects over the next three years, and approximately 17 000 jobs are expected to be created.

Enterprisefunding Recently launched FNB-Momentum-UYF Progress Fund, which complements the Franchise Fund, launched in partnership with business partners.
Micro-finance Focus on entry-level investments, and its pilot projects with the Nations Trust and Micro Enterprise Finance are funding micro-enterprises and co-operatives.
Business development services voucher Helps young entrepreneurs to access quality business support from approved service providers through vouchers, ranging in value from R1 500 to R23 000.
Take it to the People project Launched recently to create locally based economic opportunities for young people. The project focuses on income-generation and self-employment for young people living in 21 urban and rural areas identified as significant “poverty pockets”. The project aims to develop local solutions to unemployment by investigating options for youth development in the form of micro and small businesses and co-operatives. It will work in conjunction with local municipalities and donors.
Contact, information & counselling Aim to reach more than 730 000 young people over the next three years, offering information and counselling support regarding career development, employment and entrepreneurship through a youth line, advisory centres and an Internet portal. The first 12 of 33 planned advisory centres have already opened in the provinces of Gauteng, KwaZulu-Natal, Limpopo, Northern Cape, North West, and Western Cape.
School to Work Is designed to transfer high-level technical skills and to facilitate work experience for unemployed matric and tertiary graduates. It also aims to introduce black youth into previously inaccessible careers, such as IT and accounting.
Youth Service Focuses on unemployed youth who have no tertiary education, enabling them to acquire the skills, competencies and experience they require to achieve economic independence. This is done through a structured learning programme and accredited through a SETA.

Small, Micro and Medium Enterprises (SMME’s) Support

The institutions listed in the table below support small businesses.

In addition to the listed institutions, there are also NGOs, donors and private sector organisations (e.g. the programme by the Banking Council of SA) who support SMMEs.  The Black Economic Empowerment Commission, an initiative of black business, also highlighted the importance of SMME development for broad based black empowerment.




Centre for Small Business Promotion This is a Chief directorate in the DTI, responsible for policy and coordination of support programmes for SMMEs. It also mobilises funds and supervises the establishment of new institutions.
Ntsika Enterprise Promotion Agency Provides non-financial support such as mentoring programmes, business advice, help with government tenders and technology support to small enterprises, through:

  • Local business service centres (LBSC)
  • Tender Advice Centres (TACs)
Targets survivalist, micro and very small enterprises.
Majority of the LBSCs focus on start-up business, targeting unemployed, women and youth.
Khula Provides access to finance through:

  • Khula Credit Guarantee Scheme – provide guarantee products to banks.
  • Other institutions and NGOs, referred to as Retail Finance Intermediaries (RFIs) which borrow from Khula to make loans to SMMEs
  • Khula-Start: access to micro credit in rural areas
Mainly targets very small, small and medium enterprises, with two small programmes for the survivalist and micro sector.
NAMAC Two key programmes

  • Manufacturing advisory centres (MACs), providing support for small scale manufacturing businesses.
  • Business Referral and Information Network (BRAIN) – information and a help line.

The MACs are mainly for small and medium, more formal businesses.

BRAIN for the entire spectrum of SMMEs.

Provincial SMME desks To provide a one-stop information centre to SMMEs and developing enabling government policy to support SMMEs in each province.  Activities of the SMME desks include (though not in all provinces):

  • Keeping data bases of SMMEs in the province
  • Developing SMME orientated procurement and sub-contracting policies for provincial government
  • Targeted support programmes for HDIs, women, contractors, tourism entrepreneurs, small/micro manufacturers, etc
Land Bank Finance agricultural businesses From small to large scale farmers.
Industrial Development Corporation Supports and funds various industrial development programmes. Predominantly large scale projects, but some small to medium enterprises.  Has a specific BEE mandate.
National Empowerment Corporation Funded by government, it provides funding for black economic empowerment ventures Large, but also small and medium enterprises.


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