Year Beyond Programme Volunteer Applications Extended
Statement by Helen Zille, Premier of the Western Cape
I am pleased to announce that the application deadline to volunteer for the Year Beyond Programme has been extended to 30 November 2014 so that matriculants and university graduates who are interested in participating in the programme from the beginning of next year can apply still.
Year Beyond is a Western Cape Government initiative run in partnership with a number of NGOs to implement an after school academic enrichment programme in schools with Mass Opportunity and Development (MOD) centres. The Programme involves top matric and university graduates volunteering to tutor primary and high school learners in MOD centres in order to improve education outcomes in the province.
The programme will be rolled out at 24 schools at the start of the 2015 school year and will provide English literacy and numeracy support in primary schools and English, Maths and homework support in high schools.
In September, I called for matriculants and university graduates to apply as volunteers for the 2015 year. We have received impressive applications and look forward to the many more that are yet to be submitted. In October I also had the opportunity, to visit some of our tertiary institutions to engage with university graduates about volunteering. Students at institutions such as the University of Cape Town, Cape Peninsula University of Technology and Stellenbosch University showed great interest in the programme.
The minimum requirements for participation in Year Beyond as a volunteer are:
- A minimum of a matric certificate with a good (60%) pass rate in English and Maths or a University degree;
- Computer skills; and
- A positive can-do attitude and the ability to manage yourself and lead others.
Year Beyond volunteers will be exposed to a range of opportunities including acquiring a leadership qualification, which the Stellenbosch University, Frederick Van Zyl Slabbert Leadership Institute will be accrediting and delivering. They will also be given the opportunity to expand their social and economic networks by meeting a number of influential people throughout the year and will have access to potential bursary and work experience opportunities on completion of the programme.
Volunteers will also work in groups to come up with proposals to assist the Western Cape Government in preventing school drop-outs and improving academic excellence in the province. This part of the leadership programme will be run as a challenge and will be adjudicated by a panel of judges.
The closing date for applications for the 2015 Year Beyond programme is now 30 November. Young people under the age of 25 years who are interested in becoming a volunteer can apply at www.westerncape.gov.za/yearbeyond
Once the volunteers have been recruited, high school and primary school learners in the 24 schools will be encouraged to sign up for the 2015 programme.
The programme is currently also being piloted in four schools in order to identify any issues that need to be resolved and for any improvements to be made before it is rolled out at the beginning of next year.
Over the next five years the Western Cape Government hopes to expand the programme to 500 volunteers working in 100 schools with MOD centres.
The “Year Beyond” programme is a great example of what can be achieved if government works together with other partners including civil society and tertiary institutions.
However, we cannot compensate for the role active, responsible citizens need to play in a society. We therefore call on parents to support the “Year Beyond” programme and young people and learners to become involved.
More information on the Year Beyond programme can be found at /www.westerncape.gov.za/yearbeyond