Thandeka Myeza

Young people from KwaZulu-Natal and Mpumalanga had the opportunity to be exposed to careers in agriculture, forestry and fisheries during the Youth Month of June.

This as the result of the Department of Agriculture, Forestry and Fisheries hosting career exhibitions to encourage the youth to pursue tertiary studies in these fields. The exhibitions took place in Mzumbe and Baberton respectively. Deputy Minister of Agriculture, Forestry and Fisheries, Bheki Cele, attended both events to spread the gospel of pursuing careers in these fields and express government’s commitment to support the sector. The South African Sugar Association (SASA) was invited to showcase careers in the sugar industry.

Above: SASA’s stand was popular  with young people attending the career exhibitions.
Above: Bheki Cele, Deputy Minister of Agriculture, Forestry and Fisheries, encouraging young people to grab opportunities in agriculture, forestry and fisheries.

These exhibitions were enthusiastically embraced by the youth and overall community members of Umzumbe and Barberton. Officials from the KZN Department of Agriculture and Rural Development, The Agricultural Research Council, PPECB, the IDC, DAFF, to mention a few, were present with their displays to explain to the youth what their organisations do and how they assist (in terms of bursaries and learnerships) those interested in these fields. SASA was represented by the External Affairs Division, Nutrition Department and the Shukela Training Centre. Young people flocked to the SASA stand, asking a number of inquisitive questions about the sugar industry.

Deputy Minister Cele had some insightful and inspirational words during his address on both occasions. He urged the youth to grab opportunities in agriculture, forestry and fisheries. He also encouraged them to form cooperatives and start small when there was land available to them to use.