7 December 2020
In the wake of a South African youth unemployment rate of over 61%, the Shoprite Group invested close to R500 million in skills development programmes.
This investment benefitted 157 768 people and resulted in 3.5 million training hours. The retailer also retained all of its employees at a time when the country reported its highest unemployment rate - 30.8% - since quarterly record-keeping started in 2008.
“We remain committed to providing opportunities for young South Africans at a time when they need it the most. At the height of the lockdown more than 2 million South Africans lost their livelihoods. In response to the COVID-19 crisis, we adapted our skills development programmes to ensure they were uninterrupted even as lockdown continued.”
- Monwabisi Xala, Training and Development Manager for the Shoprite Group
One of the programmes which continued throughout lockdown was the Group’s YES (Youth Employment Service) initiative. Some 2 968 youths completed this programme in which they receive on-the-job training at store service departments, like the bakery, deli and fresh foods.
“The Shoprite Group has been part of YES since its inception in 2018. We set an ambitious goal when launching this campaign and it’s with the help of partners like Shoprite that we continue to work towards achieving that goal.”
- Tashmia Ismail, CEO of the Youth Employment Service
In addition the retailer has in the 2019 academic year paid out over R16 million in bursaries with most bursary holders being female and from previously disadvantaged backgrounds.
All the Group’s achievements with regards to skills development and training are contained in its latest Sustainability Report.