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On the photo are peer educators: FRONT: Ramonde Meyer (Sitting) MIDDLE: Neliswa Ngcoko, Rocko Cornelius, Jonathan Fortuin (Special programmes coordinator), Kevin Coetzee, Jaylon Stuurman, Nolabantu Mgwenya, Khayakazi Ntlantsana and Ncediswa Malayisha. BACK: Renaldo Boezak

The George Municipality recently held a Gala dinner as a gesture of appreciation and to bid farewell to the Expanded Public Works Programme (EPWP) Peer Educators, who served in different subsections of the Municipal Community Development Division to gain experiential training for 12 months.

The Gala dinner took place at the Banquet Hall in the Civic Centre, on 29 June 2023, and was attended by the Speaker of the George Municipal Council, councillor Sean Snyman, councillors, and officials of the George Municipality among other guests. EPWP is a key government initiative, which contributes to Government Policy Priorities in terms of decent work & sustainable livelihoods, education, health; rural development; food security & land reform and the fight against crime & corruption.

These Peer educators have been trained as Early Childhood Development practitioners, Adherence Counsellors and Facilitators and have undertaken a 12-month exposure into the working environment in the George Municipality from July 2022 to June 2023. Sophia Fanelo, the George Municipality’s Manager for Social Development says that the Forty (40) EPWP peer educators who were appointed through the EPWP fund are now ready for the corporate working environment. “The training these peer educators had undergone in the Municipal Community Development was intended at empowerment and learning working skills.”

After 12 months of experiential training at the George Municipality, five of the peer educators have already secured appointments at Non-Governmental Organisations (NGOs) and Government Departments. “We are thrilled and proud to announce that five peer educators have subsequently been permanently employed, two (2) by the Department of Education, one at Kekkel & Kraai, one at Bell and another one at the Department of Health,” Fanelo added. “Some of the Peers also got their Learners Licence through the Public Work programme.”

Councillors: From left to right: Sophia Fanelo (Manager: Social Development), Councillor Brendon Adams (Portfolio Councillor: Social Development, Libraries and Sport), Councillor Jacqulique Von Brandis (Portfolio Councillor: Civil Engineering Services: Capital Projects & BFI), and Councillor Sean Snyman (Speaker).