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New phase for youth development portal

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EvenMe!, the online portal that bridges the gap between sustainable employment and school leavers, graduates, unemployed youth and entrepreneurs, has announced the roll out of their second phase of development.
For the second phase of development the portal partnered with CPS Technologies and Star Schools who worked closely with EvenMe’s Jill Young and Gavin Jones to develop a sophisticated backend for the portal. Phase 2 now delivers a series of carefully curated, interactive user journeys aimed to address each users specific needs, giving them a much more efficient route to the information they need, which means it lessens the burdens of data usage and it makes their experience that much more personalised.
The innovative portal was first launched in December 2015 as a platform for the youth to interact, connect and learn and as a highly tangible resource where young South Africans could get the tools and know-how they needed to secure sustainable jobs or entrepreneurial income streams.
Says EvenMe! co-founder, Jill Young: “The first 6-months of being live gave us immensely valuable insight into what the critical gaps were and what kind of real support our youth need in order to step-up and live their best lives.”
Explains CPS Technologies chief operating officer Eugene Weimers: “Whether it’s compiling a CV, finding out how to open a bank account, or applying to study at a tertiary institution, we have succeeded in presenting the EvenMe! users with easy to navigate journeys that effectively empowers young people to make the most of the opportunities life presents to them.”
EvenMe! users are now required to register (or re-register if they had already registered during phase one, to enable the portal to better understand who they are. After registration they complete a questionnaire which allows the system to get to know what they are looking for – first-time job seeking, entrepreneurial tips, career boosting advice or more. Once the registration has taken place, the user will have a personalised dashboard geared just for them.
Besides the numerous user journeys (comprising a total of more than 1000 process maps), there’s also a comprehensive learner management system (LMS) for high school learners, developed by education service provider Star Schools.
“The LMS provides access to a universe of grade 10, 11 and 12 learning in mathematics, physical science, accounting and English First Additional Language,” explains Star Schools CEO Atul Patel. “This is in the form of digital workbooks containing CAPS-aligned (Curriculum Assessment Policy Statement) content which covers the most important examination topics, with examples, and includes challenging exercises and interesting assignments.”
The learning experience is further enhanced through various electronic resources contained in the workbooks. These include:
* Instructional videos – providing educator-on-demand learning content, just as if the learner were in the classroom;
* Glossary – a comprehensive list of important terms and key words, along with easy-to-understand explanations;
* Electronic tools – to assist learners in their studies, such as a scientific calculator for mathematics and a periodic table for science;
* Data summary sheets – providing all the relevant mathematical and scientific formulae;
* Assessments – enabling learners to test their knowledge in key areas.
“EvenMe! is now an outcomes based system that is designed to deliver exactly what a user needs, in a carefully curated manner to ensure they achieve their goals,” says Young.
Earlier this year, Statistics South Africa released their latest employment stats which showed that although there was a 0.1% decline in unemployment in Q2 of 2016, there was an increase of 379 000 inactive people (which implies that many South Africans who lost their jobs remained inactive instead of moving into new employment). The report also showed that 3,2-million youth (15 to 34 years) remain unemployed (the rate is a terrifying 37,5%).
“These stats represent a crisis in South Africa. The level of unemployment, particularly of our youth, has dire consequences not only on their lives but on the overall growth of the country’s economy. And when the economy stagnates it raises unemployment even further, sending the country into a terrifying cycle,” says Young. “And I believe the only way we are going to effectively move out of the cycle is through active involvement and investment from the private sector. Big business, SMMEs and entrepreneurs are key to the solution, which is where a platform like EvenMe! steps in.”