ECDC graduates 67 Film and IT learners

SEPTEMBER 12, 2015

The local film and Information Technology industry received a boost with the recent graduation of 67 learners from the Monyetla Work Readiness Programme Phase IV run by the Eastern Cape Development Corporation (ECDC) through its Eastern Cape Local Content Hub late last week.

Drawn from the mainly rural areas of the province, already 39 of the graduates have been offered a 12 month internship with ECDC. Some 75% of the learners are women while two are people with disabilities.

The four-month programme came as a result of a successful ECDC application to the Department of Trade Industry (DTI) to participate in the department’s funded Monyetla programme. ECDC is currently the only approved participant of the programme in the Eastern Cape for the 2015/16 cycle.

Monyetla Work Readiness Programme (MWRP) is a national government initiative that has been running cyclically since 2008 under the direct leadership of the DTI.

It is designed to develop/sharpen competency profiles of unemployed young people in order to prepare them for entry level employment opportunities. The programme is capitalised through a joint contribution from the National Skills Fund (NSF) and the Development Bank of Southern Africa (DBSA).

“ECDC went through the databases of Technical Vocational Education and Training (TVET) colleges, Film and ICT stakeholders among others in search of qualifying unemployed graduates who could be trained in IT and Film. More than 100 applications were received and graduates were taken through a competitive interview process from which 67 candidates were successful.

“We are delighted that these graduates have now benefitted from a South African Qualifications Authority (SAQA) accredited programme which will improve their employment prospects. The majority of learners are from the King Hintsa TVET College in Dutywa, MSC College as well as from Dolce Sounds in East London,” says ECDC acting chief executive Ndzondelelo Dlulane.

Dlulane says the programme which started at the end of March, was a four-month intensive in class training in IT and Film. Learners were taught skills in film and TV production operations and IT end-user computing.  A total of 50 leaners graduated with a qualification in Film and Television Production Operations and 17 with a National Certificate: Information Technology: End User Computing.

During the four-month period, learners received stipends which were meant to ensure that they could rent accommodation while they were studying.

“Particularly exciting is that these young learners are being graduated in two of the growing sectors of the provincial economy. Film and ICT are growth and priority sectors that still need a significant amount of support and development because they hold substantial economic benefit.

“Through the skills gained form the programme, these graduates will begin to tell stories that serve the needs of society. We are especially proud of them because they have stepped up to search for and make use of the opportunities presented through the program,” says ECDC Board chairman Nhlanganiso Dladla.

King Hintsa TVET College work placement officer Sibongile Simani says the programme offers unemployed graduates exposure to employment opportunities.

“Many of the learners come from deep in the rural areas where there are very scant opportunities for employment. This training opportunity exposes them to improved chances of employment. We are hoping to make this a long-term working arrangement.

“The programme means while learners are attending training they can apply for employment because of their proximity to resources in a city such as East London. When they are home in the rural areas, they are far away from resources which should give them access to search for employment opportunities,” says Simani - getnews.co.za