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FP&M SETA – Investing heavily into the Development of South Africa’s Youth

FP&M SETA – Investing heavily into the Development of South Africa’s Youth

FP&M SETA – Investing heavily into the Development of South Africa’s Youth

The Fibre Processing and Manufacturing Sector Education and Training Authority (FP&M SETA) is mandated to facilitate skills development within the FP&M sectors. As a critical part of this mandate, the FP&M SETA together with their partners, makes available a number of learnership opportunities for the youth and previously
disadvantaged individuals of South Africa within the FP&M sectors. The FP&M SETA designs unique programmes aimed at closing the gaps in critical skills shortages across the sectors. They are intended to ensure that the highest calibre of graduate is produced and ready to flourish in their new careers.

Introducing the International Leadership Development Programme (ILDP) to foster South Africa’s next business leader

In July 2015, the FP&M SETA launched the ILDP which is aimed at creating exceptional leaders with strong business and leadership acumen. With a budget of over R8 million, the ILDP explores cutting-edge knowledge, best practices and trends in leadership, innovation and entrepreneurship, by visiting and liaising with influential institutions and leaders in the USA and South Africa.

Established to foster transformation and create future leaders through cutting-edge thinking, design and innovation, the programme was devised by Regenesys, one of the fastest growing global business schools, and customised for the FP&M SETA constituencies and stakeholders in the 13 industry sub sectors that represent the Fibre, Processing and Manufacturing sector.

The top two entrepreneurial candidates from each of the sub sectors, were nominated. A total of 26 students from the FP&M sector were chosen and have started with the 2015 International Leadership Development Programme.

Enhancing career prospects through hands-on work experience

In another programme, the FP&M SETA has partnered with the South African Graduate Development Association (SAGDA) to place interns within the FP&M SETA’s regional offices and other workplaces, with the purpose of gaining professional, practical work experience. The interns are assigned a mentor to shadow where they are exposed to the office environment.

“It has been a very flourishing and well-travelled journey.”

The partnership between the FP&M SETA and SAGDA has given opportunity to 350 graduates last year, of which most have completed the program and were able to gain permanent employment. This year, the partnership has offered 210 new graduates the opportunity to strengthen their job prospects within the sector.

Mathapelo Makomene is one of the interns who joined the FP&M SETA workforce in April 2014. She holds a Bachelor of Technology degree in Logistics Management and is currently enrolled for her M-Tech degree at the University of Johannesburg. Mathapelo joined the FP&M SETA as a supply chain management intern.

“It has been a very flourishing and well-travelled journey. I regard myself as very fortunate to be amongst the generation that completed their studies in record time and received an internship straight after. The reality is that there are thousands of qualified graduates that are sitting at home with their degrees” she said.

When she joined the internship programme, the only knowledge she had of logistics management was that which she had obtained during her studies. She said: “Given the chance to put what I have studied into practice has been a fulfilling experience. The FP&M SETA staff were welcoming, willing to share knowledge and were very patient throughout.”

The challenge of balancing work and school at the same time was cumbersome for her: “It has been rather a bitter sweet 12 months of my life. Balancing both work and school at the same time is not easy but it taught me to set deadlines for myself, to manage my time, make decisions, communicate effectively and most importantly how to be a team leader as well as a team player. When asked how she managed to stay motivated, she said: “The desire to excel both at my work and school kept me going. I am grateful for this opportunity and I made sure I learn as much as I could. I am ready to take on the world and be great at everything I do.”

The FP&M SETA, through its large partner network, also offers a number of learnership programmes aimed at those with disabilities and special needs.

Supporting local fashion design initiatives

The FP&M SETA partnered with the South African Fashion Designers Agency (SAFDA) to host the 20th Vukani Fashion Awards in Braamfontein last year. The week-long event, sponsored by the FP&M SETA, was aimed at providing training to young, up-and-coming designers and entrepreneurs, and to highlight the number of career opportunities available to them in the fashion industry.

The Vukani Fashion Awards had several key interest areas. There was an Enterprise Exhibition where developing entrepreneurs showcased
their designs. There were information seminars and workshops which were attended by youth from nearby TVET colleges, private training
institutions, learners from Sew Africa, students from local higher education institutions, young fashion entrepreneurs, nominees of the Vukani Awards and students of SAFDA. The events also included the African Pride Awards as well as the Young Fashion Designer Awards.

Enriching the community, one skills centre at a time

The FP&M SETA also offers programmes and initiatives aimed at enriching the communities in which they are implemented.

This year, the FP&M SETA invested R25 million in the establishment of the Richmond-Indaleni Community Skills Centre. The centre will offer post-school education and training programmes that will enable young people to develop occupationally-directed skills. These skills will contribute to the broader Richmond community by tackling poverty and unemployment that plague the area.

The community skills centre will offer the following FP&M SETA accredited skills programmes:

• Garment Construction
• Furniture Making/Cabinet Making
• Silviculture
• Pest Control
• Tree Felling and Timber Production
• Footwear Hand Lacing

This initiative is made possible by a strategic collaboration of partners and pivotal members of the Richmond Community.

Empowering SMMEs in Kwazulu-Natal and Western Cape

Small businesses are critical catalysts in the drivers of growth and job creation. The FP&M SETA has recognized SMMEs as a core area of priority for skills development.

The Apparel Manufacturers of South Africa Cluster Training SMME Project takes place in Kwazulu-Natal and the Western Cape and is aimed
at improving and developing SMMEs current capability ensuring long-term sustainability. In Kwazulu-Natal, 40 SMMEs located in the rural areas of Ladysmith, Isithebe and Port Shepstone are being developed. In the Western Cape, 50 SMMEs in the Cape Metro and rural areas of Atlantis, Caledon and Hermanus are also involved.

The project, valued at over R12 million, focuses on training in three key areas, being world-class manufacturing, technical skills development and management development. To date, 1079 learners have been registered on management development programmes, clothing learnerships and skills programmes. This automatically broadens the skill base of workers in the clothing industry and provides opportunities to the unemployed youth to enter the labour market with skills that will enable them to become employed.

All of these partnerships and programmes form the basis of the integrity and dedication that makes up the FP&M SETA. The FP&M SETA is highly committed to its slogan of “Future Perfect Skills Development” for all of South Africa’s youth and disadvantaged individuals.

To learn more about the FP&M SETA, go to or email us at

Learners from Clothing SMMEs attending a Team Leader Programme at the FET College South Africa (KZN).

Masebe Motsepe (middle) was the winner of the “Best Ready-to-Wear Collection” and was awarded the honour of “Overall Winner”

The Honourable Minister of Higher Education and Training, Dr Blade Nzimande, launched the Richmond-Indaleni Community Skills Centre. He is seen here with the CEO of the FP&M SETA, Ms Felleng Yende, the Chairman of the FP&M SETA Board, Mr Sipho Ngidi and dignitaries from other stakeholder groupings.

Gauteng – Tel: 011 403 1700 | KwaZulu-Natal – Tel: 031 702 4482 | Western Cape – Tel: 021 462 0057

The CEO of Regenesys, Ms Siegie Brownlee and the CEO of the FP&M SETA, Ms Felleng Yende recently launched the ILDP programme. They are seen here with the ILDP candidates and members of the FP&M SETA staff.

Mathapelo Makomene
FP&M Seta

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