21 new young retailers enter the exciting world of retail
Twenty-one Jump Start candidates (Retail Frontline Programme) were employed for entry-level positions in the MRP concept store in Fourways Mall.

Hello Retail! Twenty-one Jump Start candidates (Retail Frontline Programme) were employed for entry-level positions in the MRP concept store in Fourways Mall. Image: MRP Foundation / Pierre Tostee

 

For the past 12 years, Jump Start has been adding value to leading retailers through its demand-driven and innovative work readiness programmes throughout South Africa. At the opening of the new MRP concept store at Fourways Mall in Gauteng on August 22, the Jump Start programme proudly introduced 21 new young retailers into the exciting world of retail, a true measure of Jump Start’s success.

Jump Start is an innovative and exciting work-readiness programme that develops the skills of unemployed youth and links them to career opportunities in the retail sector and supply chain. Jump Start’s latest accolade was being recognised as a best practice for skills development and youth employment on the African continent by NEPAD. The Jump Start programmes’ differentiating factor is that it is demand-driven, matching training with industry needs, and has been strategically developed by industry, for industry

Store manager at MRP Fourways Mall, Letta Manganye, who has been with the Mr Price Group for almost 17 years expressed her gratitude to MRP Foundation, saying, “Jump Start has done a great job. They have eased the employment process because Jump Starters already have the skills and understand what is needed of them. I am proud to say that we have hired 21 Jump Starters for this store.”

She added that in 2002 she also started as a casual, working her way up the retail ladder to supervisor and management positions. “To succeed in this industry, you must have passion and love what you do. There were ups and downs and times I felt like giving up. But I had to stand up and be strong,” she said proudly.

Twenty-five year old Sibongile Dladla from Soweto completed Jump Start in August and was delighted to be employed at the Fourways store immediately after graduating.

“I am loving the retail space, working with people and helping customers. My dream is to grow within Mr Price. I want to be a manager some day,” she said.

Young job seekers like Sibongile often face many challenges in this country, including the lack of on-the-job training and South Africa’s high unemployment rate. Jump Start aims to bridge the gap for youth between the ages of 18-33 with life skills and experiential training to help them enter the job market better prepared.