The commemoration of Youth Day this year marks the 37th anniversary of the 16 June Soweto uprising and was celebrated under the theme “Working together for youth development and a drug free South Africa”.
While the youth of 1976 fought for freedom and the creation of a democratic state, today’s youth activism is directed towards successfully tackling the challenges of combating poverty, unemployment, HIV and AIDS, personal development; economic freedom and the development the country.
The Census 2011 portrays South Africa as a youthful nation with the average age of the population at 25 years old and a third of our population of 52 million under the age of 15 years.
Even though a youthful nation is generally regarded as a positive development, viewed in against the background of the country’s unemployment statistics it is a cause for concern considering youth make up 4,5 million of the unemployed.
A highlight of Youth month 2013 is the re-introduction of the National Imbizo Focus Week, which took place from 10 to 17 June 2013. The National Imbizo Focus Week focused on youth development with specific focus on the fight against substance abuse.
Imbizo Focus Week ensures heightened interaction between elected public representatives and South Africans from all walks of life in community meetings, door-to-door campaigns, national events, sports meetings and other direct engagements. Ministers and Deputy Ministers joined Premiers, MECs, Mayors and Councillors in mobilising society against substance abuse. The recent visit of the President to the Eldorado Park community in Gauteng serves as a basis for further engagements on this issue.
Alcohol and substance abuse and illicit drug trafficking is a global phenomenon, and South Africa is no exception. This has serious implications for millions of South Africans because alcohol and substance abuse contributes to crime, gangsterism, domestic violence, family dysfunction and other social problems.
- Youth Development Agency hosts youth entrepreneurship roadshows
- Youth Day, 16 June
- SANCA Drug Awareness Week, 24 to 28 June
- Overcoming youth unemployment together, 19 June 2013
- Releasing potential of our young nation, 11 June 2013
- Government is at the forefront of fighting the scourge of substance abuse, 6 June 2013
- Opening up the workplace to our Youth, 24 April 2013
Get more information
- Government events, speeches and statements on Youth Month 2013
- PSM - Youth Month – June 2013 [PDF]
- Youth Month key messages [PDF]
- Government and opportunities for the youth
- Finding a job
- National Youth Development Agency
- National Youth Policy 2009 - 2014
- National Rural Youth Service Corps
- Youth Employment Accord [PDF]