For immediate release

27 November 2015

EThekwini Helps Unemployed Residents Improve Their Lives

EThekwini Municipality this week hosted a graduation ceremony for more than 50 previously unemployed Cato Manor residents who were part of an 18 month training programme.

The ceremony was held at the UMkhumbane Hall on 26 November 2015 by the Cato Manor Area Based Management. The training programme seeks to address the triple challenge of poverty, unemployment and inequality in the Cato Manor area as well as grow the local economy. 

The graduates, as part of the programme, learned various skills including upholstery and furniture manufacturing as well as being trained in early childhood development. The programme is part of the City’s strategy to address socio-economic challenges in the area.

Deputy Mayor Cllr Nomvuzo Shabalala said these intervention programmes were to address the challenges of poverty, unemployment and inequality in the City. 

“These programmes are some of the interventions by the Municipality to come up with innovative measures of decreasing poverty and providing better employment opportunities for residents. The graduation ceremony shows that the Municipality is serious about providing necessary skills that will help people of the area to uplift social and economic life of Cato Manor,” she said.

Deputy Head of Community Participation and Action Support Thomas Mketelwa encouraged the graduates to utilise their recently acquired skills to find employment and if they were unable to do so, to start their own businesses, creating an environment conducive to attracting investment. 

“This is a stepping stone to creating your own opportunities in the business world by being unique and creative and taking the ordinary and making something extraordinary out of it. Don’t rely on others, have that business mind to identify gaps in the market and innovative ways of ensuring that your business is a success,” he said

He added that as entrepreneurs they should identify local businesses and big companies to sell their products to, encouraging them to buy locally manufactured products.

He congratulated the graduates who were trained in early childhood development, urging them to find employment in this important field which provides the foundation for success in a child’s life. 

“We find that with most young people not able to finish school is the poor foundation that was laid early on in their lives. The early childhood development stage is crucial to equipping the child to overcome later challenges,” said Mketelwa.

The graduates were thankful for the opportunity and were looking forward to future business opportunities.

Marvelous Maseko who received training in upholstery manufacturing thanked the Municipality for the opportunity and the skills she acquired. She is confident she will be able to start her own business and improve her life and others who are unemployed in the community.

Dudu Ngcongo who received training in early childhood development thanked the Municipality for this once in a lifetime experience. 

“With all the skills I have acquired I will ensure that I provide a better foundation for our children in order to become better future leaders,” she said.


Issued by the eThekwini Municipality’s Head of Communications, Tozi Mthethwa.

For more information contact Gugu Mbonambi on 031 311 4855 or email:

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