VineyardThe Vineyard Hotel is pleased to support youth employment and skills development in South Africa by welcoming 10 new food and beverage learners from Harambee Youth Employment and the Chrysalis Academy to the Vineyard family.

These learners will be working in various areas of the hotel’s food and beverage department for the duration of their one year learnership, until they graduate in May 2016. While they will be receiving hands-on training and work experience as part of the Vineyard team, they will also be required to attend compulsory classes at the International Hotel School during this period.

“We welcome a new group of learners each year – the staff are always so excited at the arrival of the new faces! While their learnership is only officially for a year, we find many don’t want to leave, and join the hotel as permanent staff members – which is, of course, the best case scenario for us,” says Carey Frost, Group Development & CSI Coordinator.

Harambee Youth Employment Accelerator offers a free service to young work seekers between the ages of 18 – 28, which includes training and assistance with securing a job. As South Africa has the third highest unemployment rate in the world, even though there are jobs available, Harambee has found that thousands of learners who matriculate and graduate each year aren’t necessarily ready for the workplace.

Chrysalis Academy is an initiative of the Western Cape Provincial Cabinet, offering a holistic and sustainable five year youth development program based on three month empowerment training. The Academy initially only focused on those most at risk – 16 to 22 year old males – Chrysalis has young women since 2002. From humble beginnings 12 years ago, they have provided training for between 5 000 – 6 000 young people. As a result, the Academy has become one of the most successful youth development organisations in South Africa.

“I moved to Cape Town to try and better my life and make my dreams a reality. I couldn’t afford to stay in school – I tried to find a job, but after endless searching, I had no luck. After hearing of Harambee, I applied to the program and they helped me get a position at the Vineyard Hotel. I never thought I would work in the hospitality industry, or at a great hotel like the Vineyard, but I love every single minute of it,” comments Asiphe who has recently joined the Vineyard’s team.

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