Government and opportunities for youth

Bursasies, internships and learnerships
National Youth Development Agency
Government services for the youth
Links to youth websites




Government sees the youth as the future leaders of our country. This page focuses on opportunities that Government provides for the youth.

Minister in the Presidency Jeff Radebe signed 12 August 2015 the National Youth Policy 2020 (NYP2020). The NYP 2020 is a set of goals and commitments by government in advancing youth development. It was extensively consulted before being adopted by the executive cabinet.

Bursaries, internships and learnerships

Are you young, energetic, intelligent, physically and mentally fit individuals, dedicated to serving their country by pursuing a career in policing? The South African Police Service from time to time looks for applications from all races and gender to enlist as a police trainee. For the requirements, application form and an exercise guide, see

Other opportunities:

Government has established a range of support programmes and strategies to empower youth in the various sectors such as:

  • Minister of Arts and Culture Paul Mashatile reported in his budget vote speech for 2012/13 that
  • As part of the Mzansi Golden Economy Strategy, a number of high impact programmes targeting youth and women in the arts have been identified. These include:
    • the Indoni, My Heritage My Pride programme which aims to provide young people with life skills training, education and encouragement. They offer training for young people between the ages of 12 and 25 years throughout South Africa during public school holidays.
    • the Trendsetter Initiative through which the department encourages youth to participate in the arts and thus contribute to the development of their communities
    • the Public Art programme, skilling young people and employing them to beautify their communities using their artistic abilities
    • the Emerging Creatives programmes, providing an opportunity for 40 young designers to showcase their designs along side established designers at the Design Indaba in Cape Town.
  • Expanded Public Works Programme (EPWP)  initiatives that sees young people involved in the refurbishment, rehabilitation, and maintenance of community infrastructure across the country.
  • Learnerships and internships focussed on raising the skills capacity of young people through Sector Education and Training Authorities.
  • National Rural Youth Service Corps programme aims to enhance skills development by providing unemployed youth in the rural areas with opportunities to work in their communities and to be trained to provide the necessary services for local socio-economic development. 

Central Application Clearing House

The Department of Higher Education and Training is operating the Central Application Clearing House or CACH. The CACH service is for learners who qualify for higher education studies but have not been accepted at an institution of their choice at the time the matric results were released.

It is also for those learners who did not apply before the closing dates last year and now find that they are eligible for higher education studies.

Learners looking for spaces in the university education system can contact the call centre on 0860 356 635 or send an SMS with their name and ID number to 49200 and be telephoned back free of charge. They can also access the system via the website The CACH service will verify the learner’s information and forward it to institutions that still have unfilled places. Where places exist and applicants meet the requirements, institutions will contact students to offer them available places.

National Youth Development Agency

The National Youth Development Agency is a government agency whose role is to initiate, facilitate, implement, coordinate and monitor youth development interventions aimed at reducing youth unemployment and promoting social cohesion. The NYDA focusses on:

  • tailor-made interventions for job preparedness and placement
  • scholarship provision for those who excel in schools
  • the scaling up of the YouthBuild Programme for out-of-school youth
  • the increase of second chance opportunities for matriculants
  • the intensification of our highly successful career guidance programme. 

Call Centre 0800 52 52 52

Government services for the youth

Government has a number of services that benefit the youth.

Personal identification

It is essential to have an identity document when you want to register for writing the matric exams or getting a drivers licence.


You can register on the national voter's roll when you are 16, but may only vote once you have turned 18.


You can get a drivers' licence at eighteen.

Tertiary education

Tertiary education is becoming more important. Government supports students who cannot afford the fees.

Career Development Services

The Department of Higher Education and Training runs a Career Development Services Centre to assist learners with career advice.

SMS or “Please Call Me”: 072 204 5056
Telephone: 086 999 0123
National Career Advice Portal:
Walk-in Centre: 123 Francis Baard Street, Pretoria


Once you have completed your education, you need to start looking for a job.


With a job comes the responsibility to pay tax.

Travel outside SA

Some young people prefer to travel before pursuing further education.



Government youth websites

International websites


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