South Africa has an unemployment rate of 46.6% right now. And all indicators are showing that this is only going to increase. We have lost over 660 000 jobs in the past three months with only the finance sector adding jobs. What is clear is that we have a massive pool of youth that have been let down by the country's leaders and have no hope. This is creating a situation of desperation, depression and anxiety that is effectively paralysing the youth, a situation that is rapidly destabilizing the future of our country.
Geared to Grow is a strategic intervention aimed at unemployed youth, the vulnerable and forgotten. We have put together a programme that equips our candidates with both a drivers licence and the tools to gain employment or start up their own little business. While there might not be enough jobs in the formal sector right now this does not mean that there are no opportunities. We believe that South Africans have what it takes to overcome this situation but a hand up is required.
We have launched Project #CODERED to drive rapid economic development through the vulnerable and unemployed. Our target for the #CODERED pilot project is 50 learners and 50 drivers licenses and are working with employers to create a feeder programme for our beneficiaries. While we are starting with Code 8 we will be including Code 10 and professional driving permits as we grow. For the pilot we cover all aspects including booking and license fees, 10 hours for learner classes and 20 hours of drivers classes, transport to book for both learners and drivers, car hire for the test as well as photos.
The pilot is being rolled out in partnership with nubee app, a South African automotive startup. The nubee app, available for download on the Apple and PlayStores, lets learner drivers view instructors in their area. They can then evaluate them according to their rates, ratings and reviews; and book a lesson in a matter of minutes. The app’s geolocation software allows learner drivers to track their lessons, and learner drivers and instructors can also plan their schedules effectively with the app’s calendar feature.
Learner drivers have peace of mind that every instructor on the nubee app is individually vetted before being activated on the platform, and are continuously evaluated to ensure educational and vehicle standards are upheld.
We understand that some will need more time than others, such as Frank who we are helping to learn English while he goes through the learners course. And William who was driven to get his license so that he can assist his family with transport in an emergency and also wants to start up his own business. The biggest obstacle he was facing was not having a driver's licences - and that is now overcome.
Our beneficiaries for the pilot project have been drawn from a network of youth care centres where we are assisting youth older than 18, homeless rehabilitation programmes, community development programmes and unemployed youth. We have a network of beneficiary organisations that we will be partnering with once the pilot is complete.