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Empowering communities one computer course at a time

43 community members from Imizamo Yethu and Hangberg are now one step closer to entering the job market, after recently completing an 8 week basic computer skills part time course, at the Sijongo-Phambili Community Learning Centre in Hout Bay.

It’s part of an initiative called “Awesome AfriCAN”, started by Reputation Matters – a company specialising in reputation research. Reputation Matters’ managing director Regine le Roux says she got the idea to launch the initiative at her development running club in Hout Bay.

One of the club members had asked her for a job, and an opportunity arose where she needed someone to do some data capturing. The only problem was he did not know how to use a computer.

“I then realised there is this massive gap and massive responsibility that we have, to upskill our people – with skills we often take for granted.”

Le Roux partnered with Life Manuwe, the facilitator and director of Lyfe Computer Technologies, to launch the pilot phase of the programme in Hout Bay.

Manuwe says there is a massive need in our communities to learn basic computer skills.

“The interactive computer lessons are a couple of hours a week, where we teach basic Word, Excel, PowerPoint and Outlook skills. We want to help our community members to be more employable and through this we are playing our part to get people into the job market and ultimately to help with poverty alleviation.”

The Awesome AfriCAN initiative looks at empowering community members, not just in Hout Bay, but also the rest of Cape Town, the Western Cape, South Africa and even the rest of the continent.

“We have an amazing continent, we need to empower our people to get into the job market, which will stimulate the economy on a micro level and ultimately, the bigger picture, to stimulate the economy across the continent. We are currently busy with a similar project in Saldanha Bay,” says le Roux.

The next part of the computer training is to incorporate coding, as well as sessions such as job readiness sessions, for example, how to write a CV, how to prepare for a job interview, and of course data capturing. The initiative will also look at incorporating a course on entrepreneurship development, which experts agree is a key component to job creation.

The course has been offered at no fee to the community members. But to be able to continue offering these classes, and expanding into other communities they need funding.

Le Roux says they didn’t want to start a new non-profit organisation, instead they are working with Rotary to help manage the funds they receive from sponsorship, because they know that the funds are 100% accounted for each project it is assigned to.

If you can help sponsor an individual to go on a computer course, contact Regine at awesome@reputationmatters.co.za

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Liesl Smit – Senior Reporter and Anchor, Smile 90.4FM News

 

 

 

 

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