South Africa’s Youth Need a Basic Package of Support

The Youth Explorer highlights critical challenges and choices that confront youth, as they progress through school and then into the labour market and broader society. Alongside this, SALDRU’s researchers have been engaged in research and processes that have brought to the fore the need for Basic Package of Support for the youth.

In December last year, a Youth Convention, co-hosted by multiple partners inckuding UCT’s Poverty and Inequality Initiative headed by SALDRU’s director, Murray Leibbrandt, highlighted the challenges facing the country’s youth. Significantly, the convention identified the need for a Basic Package of Support for South Africa’s youth.

According to a report by the Mandela Initiative, the Youth Convention proposed five components for the package.

  • Health and wellbeing: Improved access to quality preventative, promotive, curative and rehabilitative services.
  • Employment and economic empowerment: Creation of decent jobs and social protection in an environment of general job scarcity. (The group recognised the limits to the economy’s job creation capacities. For this reason, some members recommended substantial expansion of social protection, e.g. a Basic Income Grant.)
  • School and education: Creation of environments conducive to teaching and learning so that young people can leave school with empowering qualifications.
  • Tertiary education: Support to young people to realise their potential once they leave school.
  • Economic opportunities: Access to financial resources for poor young people over 18 years old.

Learn more about this proposed package of support for South Africa’s youth on the Mandela Initiative’s website.