South Africa’s construction sector employs many unskilled or low-skilled workers. Based on the government’s planning documents, the level of professional qualifications on the market is unexpectedly low and unfortunately, the national education system has not met this challenge. This situation is exacerbated further by the lack of congruence between existing trainings and actual requirements in the sector. Construction sector workers gain professional skills for the most part in an unstructured, informal fashion and on-the-job at construction sites. This results in low-quality work, non-adherence to given standards and consequently, limited incomes.
The new project, co-financed by SDC - in collaboration with Sika AG and Hilti AG - aims to improve living standards among low-skilled workers in the South African construction sector and address the lack of skills through on-the-job training and related training courses.
Offering various training programmes, the project will target at least 1,000 workers. Some of them will be seeking to develop their own independent businesses, while others will complete longer-term training programmes through which they will earn degrees recognising their new skills.