With President Cyril Ramaphosa; Minister of Economic Development, Ebrahim Patel; Minister of Higher Education, Naledi Pandor; and Deputy Minister of Trade and Industry, Bulelani Gratitude Magwanishe in attendance, Volvo Group Southern Africa committed itself to continued youth development at a ceremony at its Durban assembly plant during May.

Learners from schools and higher-education colleges from the Star for Life programme were in attendance. Star for Life is a non-profit organisation that aims to provide young people in South Africa with essential life skills, sports training and health education. The company will invest R7,8 million in the programme between 2017 and 2019.

“Star for Life is an exemplary project that creates new opportunities for young people in South Africa to complete an education and to create good lives for themselves. In the process, opportunities also arise for some of the qualified youth that completed their training through Star for Life, to be employed by Volvo,” explained Torbjörn Christensson, president of Volvo Group Southern Africa.

Since 2015, Volvo Group Southern Africa has invested more than R86 million in apprenticeship training, automotive industry learnerships, disabled-person learnerships, as well as internships. It will invest another R25 million during 2018.

Ramaphosa heaped praise on Volvo Group for its continued commitment to the country.

“Volvo believes it is not enough to invest only in factories, machinery and supply chains. We applaud Volvo for making youth development such an integral part of its social investment programme.”

About the Star for Life programme, Ramaphosa added: “We  all share a responsibility to develop the skills of the young people of our country. Improving the delivery of education in our schools will help us to create the South Africa we want; the South Africa of the future.

“Thank you, Volvo, for standing behind this programme,” he concluded.

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