The mentorship programme was conceptualised some three years ago, and 57 mentees have emerged after a one year long programme.
The National Mentorship Movement (NMM) is a renowned NPO, having worked successfully in changing the lives of over 1500 mentees across industries that have benefitted through their various initiatives. They facilitate the growth of others, allowing for prosperity to thrive once a mentor is connected to a mentee, allowing for both parties to reciprocate their knowledge, experience and wisdom. ‘Their tag line is ‘the Power of 2′, and we have witnessed the effect of this phenomenal power of 2 when we hear the life-changing impact this project has had on our mentees,’ said Dr Abdool Majid Mahomed, Chief Executive Officer, Printing SA.
‘When we heard about the amazing programmes NMM have conducted, we saw a perfect fit for the efforts we as Printing SA were making in nurturing the broader skill sets of unemployed youth who have the drive and ambition to make print a career for themselves, and SMMEs in our sector wanting to move a gear higher — learning from senior and experienced stalwarts from our industry,’ said Dr Mahomed.
‘This programme had a mix of mentors from our industry and from the NMM’s database. We acknowledge the role played by senior executives like Patrick Lacy, Barry Lynch, Geoff Warren and Richard Downes. A total of eight individual mentors and eight group mentors facilitated the various sessions. From the total of 57 mentees on this programme, 28 were directly from the printing sector, comprising of 20 from the unemployed youth category, and eight from the SMME sector.’
A further 29 were from the youth development organisation called Activate Change Drivers. These youth were recruited directly from a cohort trained in entrepreneurship, with an interest or investment in the printing industry, as per the mentorship programme requirements.
Watch a mentor and mentees discuss their journey through the programme below:
Due to the programme starting during the Covid-19 pandemic, the entire programme was conducted online. Mentors and mentees would meet in their groups on Teams or Zoom once a month for about an hour and a half. Many of the mentees and mentors had a WhatsApp group where they would engage between their monthly meetings. The programme ran for 12 months, from August 2021 to August 2022.
Printing SA is also helping to kickstart the careers of young people in print with their Foundational Learning and Introduction to the Printing and Packaging Industries programmes. Talented and screened learners who are eager to take up career opportunities are placed at member companies and the companies can claim the employment tax incentive grant for hiring youth under 35 years old. Printing SA has placed over 80% of their FLP students (from the 2021 intake of 80 learners) into companies.