Youth Month 2017

This year marks the 41 year anniversary of the Soweto Uprising on 16 June 1976, when 15 000 students gathered outside the Orlando West Secondary School, to participate in a peaceful march against the use of Afrikaans in their classrooms.

Youth Month, and Youth Day, pays tribute to the school pupils who lost their lives during the 1976 uprising in Soweto under the national theme:“The Year of OR Tambo: Advancing Youth Economic Participation.”

This Youth Month our government will highlight all the available opportunities we provide for our youth, educating young people about their history and heritage, while inspiring youth to get involved and to help them realise their role towards social cohesion and nation-building.

Watch what our young people will be doing to uplift their communities

Let's help shape the future for our youth

While the youth of 1976 fought against the system of the apartheid government, our youth of today face new challenges.

High levels of unemployment and poverty are serious challenges, but a better future is possible if we take small steps together.

Investing in our youth

Our budget for the 2017/18 financial year prioritises the development of youth in the Western Cape. Western Cape Minister of Finance Dr Ivan Meyer said that "our continued investment in improving education outcomes and opportunities for youth development is an investment in people which is an investment in growth and prosperity. "

The Western Cape Government’s Youth Development Strategy (YDS) takes on a whole-of-society approach and guides the programmes aimed at young people in our province. Our goal is to equip youth with the skills and tools needed to lead a life of value, and is based on 5 pillars, including:

  • strengthening families,
  • improving education and training,
  • increasing access to economic opportunities,
  • giving  youth a positive sense of belonging, and
  • providing effective services and support to reconnect to society.

An integrated approach to youth development

Read more about the various programmes and initiatives we've put in place to help our youth reach their full potential.

Youth Cafés

The YDS has opened the way for  projects like our Youth Cafés which offer skills development programmes. 

MOD Programme

The Mass participation; Opportunity and access; Development and growth (MOD) Programme aims to create a socially inclusive, creative and active Western Cape.

Year Beyond 

Apply for this programme if you’d like to tutor primary and high school learners. Year Beyond is an educational outreach programme that aims to assist underperforming schools, while giving you the opportunity to gain new skills.

Premier’s Advancement of Youth (PAY) project

Started by Premier Helen Zille, this project aims to provide recent matriculants with the opportunity to gain workplace experience in the Western Cape Government.


Explore the education apps, videos, eBooks and online courses available on our ePortal will improve your grades and help you realise your full potential.

Bursaries and learnerships

From engineering to accounting, use this page to find a bursary and kick start your future.

National Expanded Public Works Programme (EPWP)

This programme aims to reduce poverty and unemployment by providing temporary work, an allowance and training. EPWP beneficiaries work in various places in the districts of the Western Cape, changing their young lives for the better.

Youth Camps

The Youth Camps aim to open opportunities for networking, social inclusivity and the mass participation of youth to work better together to redress the challenges young people face on a daily basis. The Youth Camp programmes comprised of leadership, social inclusion and character building exercises.

Join the conversation on Twitter @GovernmentZA and @GCISMedia using the #YouthMonth and #YouthDay.


The content on this page was last updated on 1 June 2017