The future is looking bright for Isuzu’s first intake of Youth Employment Service (YES) candidates.

Landle Kenneth Carelse, 25, is one of the 2020 YES candidates who was successfully placed at Isuzu Motors South Africa (IMSAf). “I have really enjoyed the YES programme and the additional training we received thus far. I did not expect to be selected to stay on, but I was working towards employment despite the challenges of 2020,” said Carelse.

Isuzu’s continued commitment to excellence and the continuous building on the positive impact it has on the community has ensured the successful rollout of the YES programme despite a disruptive year in 2020. Almost 40% of the first intake of YES candidates at Isuzu found meaningful employment following their participation in the programme.

Billy Tom, IMSAf CEO and MD, said the YES programme has been a highly rewarding initiative for Isuzu.

“We partnered with Harambee Youth Employment Accelerator and this ensured we received high quality, job-ready candidates. Thus far, we have taken on 114 YES trainees and they have performed well beyond our expectations. Nineteen of the candidates found employment within the structures of Isuzu, while a further eight candidates found employment outside of the vehicle manufacturer,” said Tom.

Of the 19 YES candidates now employed by Isuzu, 15 will work in Manufacturing / Production at IMSAf, one candidate has been placed in the Logistics Department at Isuzu’s subsidiary KANU Commercial Body Construction, while three other candidates form part of the dealer sales teams of various Isuzu dealerships across the country.

One of the three females in the group of YES candidates selected to stay on at IMSAf, Anelisa Sigaba, 24, said communication was a challenge during the initial lockdown period. “Some of our team members worked from home, but once I started visiting different sites later in the year, the work became very exciting. The YES programme has been a great experience for me,” said Sigaba.

As part of its second intake, Isuzu has placed 42 new candidates in various departments across the company, its subsidiaries and dealerships.

With the unemployment rate continuing to rise – particularly amongst the youth demographic in South Africa – it is important for the private sector to play its part.

“We are committed to the growth and development of young South Africans and we believe that our youth deserve opportunities which accelerate their employability. We believe that this programme provides an opportunity to gain skills, learn workplace discipline and to grow and develop on a personal level,” said Tom.

To date the YES initiative has created over 51 000 work experiences in South Africa, deploying R3-billion into the local economy.

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