MICROSOFT and SAtion yesterday announced a Digital Skills Hub partnership to alleviate unemployment and bridge the digital divide in South Africa.
The partnership’s online platform, the SAtion Digital Skills Hub, will invest in the country’s socio-economic progress by providing free access to Microsoft Office 365 suite technology to South Africans aged from eight to 24, free digital literacy resources and Microsoft Cloud Society resources.
In South Africa, through the Digital Skills Hub, the initiative will enable a minimum of 50 000 unemployed and disadvantaged people to acquire digital skills and certification for in-demand jobs in, for example, customer services, IT support, software development and graphic design.
South Africans who want to begin their digital upskilling journey with SAtion and Microsoft can visit the Digital Skills Hub website to register for the programme that best meets their needs.
The Digital Skills Hub will host three initiatives — the Global Skills Initiative, Mahala, and Cloud Society — each offering different opportunities for the youth, the unemployed, small, medium and micro enterprises, all South Africans, and government officials to acquire digital skills.
Adam Craker, the chief executive of IQbusiness and enabling partner to SAtion, said: “President Ramaphosa’s conviction that South Africa’s youth will be at the centre of our economic recovery has never been more true – and the stakes have never been higher. Our determination to secure a competitive digital future for our youth and unemployed has driven us to conclude this momentous partnership.”
Lillian Barnard, the chief executive at Microsoft South Africa, said: “The digital economy creates the ideal opportunity for job creation. It also spurs innovation, boosts economic growth and supports long-term competitiveness.”
Local non-profit Afrika Tikkun, through its skills and placement arm, Afrika Tikkun Services, will offer access to computer equipment to ensure that job seekers are able to register for, and make use of, the Global Skills Initiative’s online learning programmes.