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Sinakho graduates sew their way to financial security

The 15 women of the 2016 Sinakho Women and Youth Development Programme are ready to enter the world of fashion, after graduating this week. They have undergone a three-month skills transfer initiative that saw these women receiving training and mentoring on all aspects of garment manufacturing, sales and distribution from the skilled staff at South African fashion creation business, House of Monatic.

To help them put these skills to use, Nedbank provided funding for the 2016 project and also donated materials for use by the participants to use during their training. Nedbank will continue its involvement with the 2016 programme and its support of the graduates, by selling some of the garments they produce through its corporate sales channel, Nedthreads.

Speaking at the graduation ceremony, Lindiwe Temba, executive head of corporate social investment at Nedbank, explained that the bank’s support of the skills transfer programme formed part of its ongoing commitment to care for South African communities and offered tangible evidence of the transformative power that is unlocked when like-minded organisations collaborate to bring about social upliftment.

“Skills development programmes like this deliver far more than just training,” Temba explained. “They also encourage the participants to believe in themselves and their abilities and give them the confidence to build their lives and sustain their families. These raised levels of confidence and self-worth are essential outcomes to which the bank aspires with all its corporate social investment efforts."

Establishing small businesses

According to Sinakho Leadership Support and Skills Development Centre founder, Zella Pahlana, the true value of the Women and Youth Skills Development programme comes from the fact that it is not only the participants who benefit. “In our experience, these training recipients typically go on to establish their own small businesses, thereby not only becoming contributors to the country’s economy, but also job creators who help to uplift many people and families in their own communities.”

At the graduation, it was also announced that the Industrial Development Corporation (IDC) has also become a partner in the skills transfer programme and has donated R500,000 towards a sewing kit for each graduate, which includes a sewing machine and other garment production tools to help the graduates establish their own small businesses.

Click through to the event gallery.