BRICS initiative takes women engineers to train in India

  • Thanks to an agreement made during the 2023 BRICS Summit, 22 women from TVET Colleges across the country are heading to India for training.
  • They are expected to be upskilled in solar panel and PV tech installation and maintenance.
  • A number of government departments and entities are backing this particular programme.

Thanks to an agreement made during the 2023 BRICS summit in South Africa, 22 women TVET student engineers are set to journey to India to begin earning solar panel manufacturing skills. The programme is set to begin on 1st May.

“Emanating from the 2023 South Africa chairship of BRICS, the Solar Technology Training Programme for women in South Africa is one of the resolutions from the BRICS Women in Business meeting that calls for women to lead community initiatives and take part in resolving the energy crisis in South Africa particularly in rural areas,” said the Department of Women, Youth and Persons with Disabilities (DWYPD) in a statement.

The women engineers who are taking part are expected to receive theoretical and practical skills in solar panel manufacturing and installation. The programme is supported by the Department of Mineral Resources and Energy, the Energy and Water Sector Education and Training Authority (EWSETA), the Council for Scientific and Industrial Research (CSIR) and the National Youth Development Agency (NYDA).

Selected students engineers are from different TVET colleges in different provinces, with some from Limpopo, North West and the Free State.

“Access to electricity should always be easily available given the important role it plays in many aspects of human and wellbeing. It is an essential service and governments must make societies function better through the provision of this kind of basic [service],” adds DWYPD Minister Nkosazana Dlamini Zuma.

The programme mirrors the Gauteng Youth Solar Technician initiative started by the Provincial Government of Gauteng and Premier Panyaza Lesufi in May 2023. This was a programme to upskill around 6 000 unemployed South Africans in the installation of solar panel and photo-voltaic (PV) technologies.

A means to combat rolling blackouts, the Gauteng upskilling programme was made when South Africa was experiencing the historical height of loadshedding last year. While Eskom’s blackouts have been non-existent for the last 30 days, Eskom does say it is likely they will return to Stage 2 in the winter months even though its system has improved.

As General Elections approach in May, expect the government to launch more upskilling and employment initiatives. In April, the government revealed a country-wide upskilling initiative to the tune of R28.3 billion in investments.

[Source – SA News]

[Image – CC 0 Pixabay]


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