PwC and UNICEF to boost youth skills and work mentorship opportunities in South Africa

More than 34 percent of young people, aged 15-24, are not in education, training or employment across South Africa. COVID-19 threatens to increase that number.

12 August 2020

PRETORIA, 12 August 2020 – PwC and UNICEF South Africa announced the details of local collaboration, on International Youth Day, to help prepare young people with relevant skills to enter the workforce.

This is part of a three-year global collaboration between PwC and UNICEF in support of Generation Unlimited. Generation Unlimited is a multi-sector partnership aimed at helping 1.8 billion young people transition from school to work by 2030. This collaboration will support young people who are currently outside of the workforce to develop the requisite 21st century skills to gain entry into the job market and to become entrepreneurs in the age of the fourth industrial revolution.

“This is a critical time for the business community, educators, government and other stakeholders to contribute collectively to the development of our young people,” said Dion Shango, CEO for PwC Africa. “Our collaboration with UNICEF will expose young people to diverse digital skills and broaden their knowledge and expertise for the future workplace. We believe that together we can make an exponential difference by helping uplift and prepare the youth for tomorrow’s new workforce,” Shango added.

“Now is the time to invest in young people,” said Muriel Mafico, UNICEF South Africa Deputy Representative “This collaboration with PwC is vital to help provide digital and transferable skills that young people have identified as being critical for their future growth and prosperity,” added Mafico.

The South African collaboration will provide a specific focus on girls and young women who often miss out on developing ICT skills. Only 23 percent of tech jobs are held by women globally according to UNESCO and this inequality is mirrored in South Africa.

PwC will support three key areas:

  • Improve young people and employers’ access to information and services about learning opportunities through a new data management platform.
  • Bolster the Techno Girls and Naspers Labs programmes, supported by UNICEF, to expand opportunities for young girls to access science, technology, engineering, arts and mathematics (STEM) related skills and work opportunities. This will be done by scaling up the programme and delivering the experience virtually.
  • Enhance existing entrepreneurship programmes and related training curricula in partnership with the University of Pretoria.

On 26 August, PwC and UNICEF will broadcast a dialogue between young people engaged in the Techno Girls and Naspers Labs programmes and PwC Africa CEO, Dion Shango and UNICEF South Africa Representative, Muriel Mafico.

Note to editors

The Techno Girls programme started in 2006 and promotes girls’ participation and learning in science, technology, engineering and mathematics fields (STEM). Techno Girls has a national footprint covering the nine provinces and its implementation strategy is based on job-shadowing and corporate mentorship. The programme targets girls aged between 15 and 18 years from disadvantaged communities, providing opportunities in the world of work in STEM careers.  

Naspers Labs was set-up in 2017 and trains young people to get jobs in industries using digital skills and with help to start their own businesses. The project blends physical space (a Lab) with a bespoke online learning and development platform that strikes at the heart of communities affected by unemployment and poverty.

Media contacts

Sudeshan Reddy
Communication Specialist
UNICEF South Africa
Tel: +27 82 561 3970
Sanchia Temkin
Media Relations
PwC Africa
Tel: +27 (0) 82 550 5146


UNICEF promotes the rights and wellbeing of every child, in everything we do. Together with our partners, we work in over 190 countries and territories to translate that commitment into practical action, focusing special efforts on reaching the most vulnerable and excluded children everywhere.

Working with a range of partners, UNICEF has had a presence in South Africa since the end of apartheid and continues to work towards bettering the lives of all children in the country.

Follow UNICEF South Africa on TwitterFacebook and Instagram

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