First Work Experience PAY Programme | Western Cape Government

First Work Experience PAY Programme

(Western Cape Government)

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The First Work Experience PAY Programme aims to create the opportunity for matriculants to gain workplace experience in the Western Cape Government (WCG). The internship allows for a year of mentoring, decision-making about a future career, on-the-job training and exposure to skills training and development to make the intern more employable.

Applications for the First Work Experience PAY Programme open annually. The programme provides matriculants between the ages of 17-24 with work experience and training within one of the 13 Western Cape Government Departments from 1 April 2024 till 31 March 2025.

Qualifying criteria:

  • 24 years old or younger.
  • Wrote and passed the National Senior Certificate (NSC) in the Western Cape in 2022 or 2023 academic years.
  • Not going to study further in 2024.
  • South African citizen, residing in the Western Cape.
  • Have no network or support to help you make informed career choices.
  • Not sure of your next step after school.
  • Financially constrained (household income less than R350,000 p/a).
  • No work experience and have not studied after matric. 

What will you achieve?

  • Work experience in the public sector.
  • Contactable references for your brand new CV.
  • A set of skills and experiences that will make you more marketable and employable.
  • A year in which to make informed career choices together with a network to back it up.

In addition you could:

  • Improve your NSC results to enhance your chances of being accepted for university/TVET College.

Make it happen

  • Complete the online application (applications open on Wednesday, 10 January 2024).
  • Come prepared to write a brief statement regarding your key skills and abilities, key achievements and experiences and career objectives. 
  • Closing date for applications: Friday, 26 January 2024.

Application tips

  • If you don't have an email address, create one at a free email site like Gmail or Yahoo. You will need it to apply.
  • Please save your username and password in a secure place so that you are able to access it should you need to. 
  • Find the public library closest to you with internet access.
  • Find the Thusong Service Centre closest to you and determine if they have internet.

We'll be verifying each applicant’s National Senior Certificate (NSC) results with the Western Cape Education Department as well as any other relevant documentation.

Please note the following:

  • Applicants will only be appointed once they've passed a security check, which includes having their fingerprints taken.
  • Applicants must ensure that they open bank accounts before undergoing a personal security check.
  • Applicants must also ensure that they register with SARS to obtain a tax number before the personnel security check.
  • Once you've registered successfully, you'll receive an email with your username and password (one time pin number).
  • You'll use this username and password to complete your application. 
  • After completing the application, you'll receive a message: "You have successfully applied for the First Work Experience PAY internship."
  • Kindly note, to avoid possible conflict of interest, we will not accept applications from persons whose family members are employed in a middle or senior management position within the Western Cape Government. 

For more information:

If you have difficulties with the online application, contact the helpline at 086 137 0214.

For any other queries you can call the PAY Office: 021 483 0742/ 9456/ 2024 during office hours. Or download the flyers below:

On-the-job training will be provided in the following departments:

How the PAY Project can change lives

Jonas McCarthy matriculated from Southern Suburbs Youth Academy at the end of 2011 and was an intern from 2012 to 2013.  

Jonas learnt about the PAY project and decided to apply. He applied to the Department of Social Development and gained experience in general administrative work and data capturing.

After Jonas completed his PAY internship he got a learnership (based on the fact that he had practical work experience through the PAY project) for 12 months at the Learning Cape Initiative (LCI). The LCI recognised his potential and offered him a position as an admin clerk.

Read about his story.

'The PAY Project is a great learning curve'

'I'm more marketable, thanks to PAY'

The content on this page was last updated on 4 March 2024