Taking off in life

DACHSER and terre des hommes have been involved in vocational training for young people in southern Africa for several years. During a recent project visit, Bernhard Simon, Chairman of the Supervisory Board at DACHSER, and Joshua Hofert, Director of Communications at terre des hommes, found out about the progress of the joint projects. They were particularly proud of the success of the six young people from Livingstone, Zambia, who had founded their own start-up, the waste recycling company Trash4Cash, following an exchange program in Germany. 

DACHSER and terre des hommes have been involved in vocational training for young people in southern Africa for several years.

The first stop on the visit was the training project in Johannesburg. DACHSER and terre des hommes support the local organization 'Outreach Foundation', which helps marginalized and forcibly displaced young people with vocational training and business start-ups and also provides psychosocial support. This triad is particularly important for girls and women who have experienced sexual abuse and exploitation while on the run. It was particularly nice to learn that former project participants are now successful in their careers. For example, Puleng Florence Mokoena, Ntokozo Ndebele, Chiratidzo Masango and Annie Sungulele Kombozi. The four young women founded the successful company "Tasty Treats" after completing catering courses and business training in the project.

The young people from the project are also given a real opportunity to start their careers at DACHSER South Africa. As part of a "Learnership Program", they spend twelve months working in various departments and gain valuable insights into the world of logistics. Many of them can then start a permanent career in logistics at DACHSER.

Finally, in Zambia, the opening of a recycling center was on the agenda, which was also attended by the mayor of the city of Livingstone. This was also a reunion with the six young people who had visited Germany and the DACHSER Head Office in Kempten five years ago as part of an exchange program. The visit to a local recycling center inspired them to set up their own company. This is because Livingstone, with its almost 200,000 inhabitants, produces no less than 90 tons of waste every day. More than half of this is burned privately or simply buried - a danger to the environment and health.

"The new recycling center means an incredible amount to me. It helps to avoid waste and protect the environment. And it helps young people like me to earn money," says Lweendo Habanyama (21), one of the project participants. Young people from the project not only help to keep the environment clean, they can also earn a living with Trash4Cash. The principle is simple: the recycled materials are sold - those who bring in waste receive money for it. 250 young people and women take part. Almost 20 percent of the plastic and paper waste in Livingstone is now collected by them. A win-win situation for people and the environment.

Trash4Cash flagship project

"Trash4Cash is a flagship project and I am incredibly proud of the six founders. They are following in the tradition of an entrepreneurial spirit that also motivated my grandfather to set up his own transport company, DACHSER, in the midst of the global economic crisis of 1930," says Bernhard Simon. "The labor market in the global South will not grow sufficiently in the foreseeable future to absorb the many talented young people. The solution is self-employment. It is worthwhile for young people to be entrepreneurial and take the future into their own hands. This is what the six young people have achieved: they are now successful entrepreneurs, have created their own income, take responsibility for a clean environment, create jobs and enable everyone who collects recyclables in the villages to earn a little extra income."

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