The partnership aims to equip 35,000 South African out-of-school youth with work readiness and entrepreneurial skills.
JA Africa, of which JA South Africa is the oldest African member, delivers hands on, immersive learning in work readiness, financial health, entrepreneurship, sustainability, STEM, economics, citizenship, ethics, and more.
The partnership with ZZF will also enable JA Africa to expand existing operations in four countries, and launch operations in five new countries, namely Burkina Faso, DRC, Togo, Sierra Leone and Liberia. In total, 550,000 African youth will be empowered to succeed as both innovative job creators and well-qualified job seekers.
According to the African Development Bank, each year 10 to 12 million African students finish their education and compete for three million jobs, resulting in sub-Saharan African youth becoming entrepreneurs by necessity, not by choice. This partnership and the JA programmes encourage young people in Africa to succeed and sets them on the path to success, not just as individuals, but as leaders who will influence positive change within their communities.
“We are very proud of this new partnership, delivering interventions and skill-based expertise with the aim to create brighter futures in Africa, building on impactful programmes we’ve already built with JA around the world. The Z Zurich Foundation’s expertise on social equity and mental well-being nicely complements JA’s track record in building resilience and self-efficacy in more than 12 million young people every year,” says Grégory Renand, head of Z Zurich Foundation.
JA Africa CEO, Simi Nwogugu, has led efforts in Nigeria and sub-Saharan Africa for more than 25 years.
“Many young Africans are entrepreneurial by nature, but may be limited in their ability to develop solutions to the challenges around them and capture value from those solutions. This partnership will help African youth develop the resilience, problem-solving and design-thinking skills, and mental well-being they need to understand the complex problems in the region and design sustainable solutions, and mentorship will play an important role,” says Nwogugu.
“All of Africa’s youth need access to immersive education that leads to economic success. Through this partnership, we’ll create entrepreneurship ecosystems that work together to fuel young Africans to become changemakers, creating businesses that solve the continent’s challenges with climate change, food shortages, and inadequate infrastructures for health and education,” says Nwogugu.