Joburg executive mayor, Parks Tau at his Mayoral office in Braamfontein. Joburg executive mayor Parks Tau received a yellow Ark from Rabbi David Masinter of Chabad as the editor of The Star, Kevin Ritchie, looked on. The Ark, an acronym for an Act Of Random Kindness, is a project initiated and conceptualised byRabbi Masinter and now part of The Star's #changeourcityforgood campaign, which Tau officially endorced yesterday. The aim of the ark is to encourage good citizenship, filling it with change and when full being given to a less fortunate recipient of the donor's choice. Picture: Antoine de Ras, 05/05/2015

Johannesburg – The Johannesburg Executive Mayor Councilor Parks Tau on Tuesday announced the first group of youths to benefit from maritime career opportunities under the city’s Vulindlel’eJozi youth programme in partnership with South African Maritime Safety Authority (SAMSA).

“Today we are gathered here to announce and send off a group of yet more young people, for whom doors into the maritime sector have just been opened,” said Tau.

The young graduates, mostly from townships, will join crews on international cruise ships, where they will learn the ropes of their trade.

“This is through the Vulindlel’eJozi programme in partnership with SAMSA and the presidential programme – Operation Phakisa, which is designed to boost the contribution of the maritime sector to the South African economy.”

The mayor said the objective of Vulindlel’eJozi was to break down barriers to various opportunities for up to 200,000 youths.

“These opportunities are not only limited to entry-level skills job training and placement, but they extend to online further education or smart education, and entrepreneurship skills development,” said Tau.

He said the youths that were being sent off graduated a “couple of weeks ago” at a ceremony attended by a US delegation of 25 overseas universities, community colleges and graduate schools that had expressed interest in the Vulindlel’eJozi’s Massive Open Online Varsity (MOOV) centres.

Since its launch in 2015, Vulindlel’eJozi has been recognised for its efforts and impact both locally and internationally.

The Gauteng Province Premier David Makhura recently described the programme during his State of the Province Address as “ground breaking”.

In its second quarter roll-out, Vulindlel’eJozi secured up to 49 000 various opportunities for unemployed young people in the City of Johannesburg.

So far, 25 261 young people have been successfully matched to these opportunities created through the programme and they are directly benefiting from them as we speak.

Tau said that about 7 500 young people had been placed into opportunities to earn a livelihood in various sectors of the economy, which included early childhood development, hospitality, information technology, retail, financial services and business process outsourcing.

“Seventy five youths are currently being trained in entrepreneurship which also includes incubation of ideas and going through the process of bringing them to life and sustaining their businesses,” said Tau.

He said 2 066 youths were registered for the entry level qualifications, which were offered in MOOV centres, which are currently being rolled-out in the City’s public libraries.

“About 20 of these young people have already obtained certificates as web masters at no financial cost to them,” explained the mayor.

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