Barclays Spaces for Sports, the U.S. Agency for International Development (USAID)and Grassroot Soccer(GRS)recently launched the Grassroot Soccer South Africa Coach Development Programme, a life skills and financial education programme in the township of Khayalitsha, Cape Town.
Barclays, the mother company to Absa, who are backing this initiative says it is not all about money but to empower vulnerable youth with the skills and support to live healthy and productive lives through life skills training, employability skills, and financial literacy.
Stephen van Coller, Chief Executive, Corporate and Investment Banking and Wealth, Absa and Barclays in Africa said: “Barclays is committed to Africa and aims to empower the next generation with the skills they need to achieve economic independence and security.
The Grassroot Soccer South Africa Coach Development Programme is a flagship programme geared to prepare young people for higher employability and educational opportunities. This programme complements our organisation’s values and purpose of helping people achieve their ambitions in the right way.
It will give them skills that will help facilitate employment and access to entrepreneurship opportunities. Investing in and developing entrepreneurial skills, life skills and financial skills of young people and creating a better world for our youth through this programme is at the heart of our Citizenship approach.”
Cape Town was identified as pilot project for it has a record high of vulnerable kids in the country.
“Over the next three years 500 young people will improve their employability while in turn teaching thousands of children vital life skills. The SKILLZ for Youth programme is a leading example of how sport for development programmes can tackle society’s toughest challenges, “says James Donald, Country Director, South Africa, Grassroot Soccer.
It is anticipated that such programmes would help particularly black children and their families, who in the past where not afforded the chance to learn the importance of savings at an early stage.
According to startling reports, majority of blacks do not save for rainy day which has resulted in most of them being trapped in debts.
An independent analyst, who spoke on condition of anonymity, says such programmes would help black kids become independent instead of relying on their peers as they grow financially.