Eastern Cape Department of Education held a crop and piggery production certification programme at Fort Cox Agriculture and Forestry Training Institute, Middledrift.
The EC province is known for leading the stats with the highest rates of unemployment in the country. Therefore, the department of education recruited about 100 individuals that were participants in the Presidential Youth Employment Initiative in agricultural schools across the Eastern Cape province, to take part in a one week crop and piggery production training.
Giving the purpose of the programme was Moneri Mogale of Fort Cox Agricultural Training Institute appointed as Total Quality Assurance Manager she said, "We really appreciate the Department of Education for giving us the opportunity to impart practical agricultural skills and knowledge to our youth.
This programme is aimed at providing the youth with skills which will enable them to produce their own food and also be able to take care of their livestock sustainably."
The short course training was 70% practical work and 30% theory, in which the students were capacitated with entrepreneurial skills on how to establish their own agricultural businesses.
After the training they were awarded with completion certificates that will enable them to further their agricultural studies.
Speaking on behalf of the Department of Education was Keith Chauke - Deputy Chief Education Specialist: Revitalization of Agricultural School said, "Provinces like the Eastern Cape can be able to fight poverty, increase food security and improve the livelihoods of millions using agriculture as a viable tool."
Mdaliwoxolo Xhongo replying on behalf of the students said, "We would like to thank the Department of Education for granting us with such an opportunity. The skills that we have acquired will enable us to start up our own businesses. However, I wish this training could be continuous so that all the South African youth would benefit."