Business and tourism hopefuls attend seminar
By Chanel September
26 February 2008
More than 100 young people from across the Western Cape gathered at the Sea Point Civic Centre on Tuesday morning to attend the youth tourism seminar.
The annual event forms part of a local government initiative which aims to attract young individuals from disadvantaged communities into the flourishing tourism industry in the province.
Youth from areas such as Bishop Lavis, Gugulethu, Delft, Khayelitsha, Hanover Park and Phillipi made their voices heard about making their mark in the tourism industry and setting up their own small businesses.
“The reason for a seminar such as this is because young people have the drive, energy and motivation which can contribute and boost the economy and tourism,” says MEC for finance and tourism Lynne Brown.
The province has a high unemployment rate of more than 500 000 people, with the majority of those people being young adults.
“We know that tourism is a big economic driver and makes a lot of money and if it’s increasing so well economically, (then) those jobs (should go) to those (underprivelaged) areas,” says Brown.
“I’m defiantly going into the tourism industry next year and I think the conference is really good because I’m receiving a lot of information about the industry,” says youth participant Tanya Benjamin.
“The conference was very interesting. I would like to open my own business one day so that I can be my own boss,” says youth participant Jonathan Koopman.
“We plan to roll out more such seminar’s and take it to other areas such as the West Coast, the Boland and the Southern Cape,” says MEC Brown.