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City Parks scooped the Green Collar Training Award and AgriSETA National Excellence Award in September in recognition of their efforts to develop skills and create employment, especially among the youth.

GDS2040GDS2040SEPTEMBER has been a winning month for Johannesburg City Parks as they scooped the Green Collar Training Award and the Agricultural Sector Education and Training Authority (AgriSETA) National Excellence Award.

The Green Collar Training Award was presented to the organisation at the BHP Billiton Achiever Awards on 6 September.

It fell under the environmental education category, and City Parks walked away with the trophy for their programme which successfully provided 105 unemployed youth with skills development and employment.

Geoffrey Cooke, acting managing director of City Parks, said: "The project is aimed at creating decent, permanent employment in a sector that is labour intensive, and we are hopeful that this is the beginning of a programme that will be rolled out on a larger scale with support from business."

The youth were selected from the City's Job Pathways database for the unemployed, which is predominantly accessed by municipal-owned entities and contractors working on infrastructure development projects for the City's Expanded Public Works Programme (EPWP).

City Parks' training academy has landed the utility an awardCity Parks' training academy has landed the utility an awardCity Parks picked up its second win, the AgriSETA Award, on 14 September, at a gala dinner that saw the organisation gaining recognition for its work in providing employment.

It took the gold in the "project employed 50 percent and more learners" category, and earned this nod based on unemployed youth who underwent training in the 2009/10 financial year on ornamental horticulture as part of level one of the National Qualifications Framework (NQF).

Thereafter, they were absorbed into City Parks and given permanent employment.

The project was submitted to AgriSETA for consideration by the learning and development division of the human resources department of City Parks; it was pitted against all AgriSETA levy payers nationwide, and managed to come out tops, earning City Parks the award and a R20 000 cash incentive.

"Johannesburg City Parks is elated that we have been recognised by these prominent institutions and commits to strive towards service excellence while simultaneously supporting economic activity, prioritising environmental education and building sustainable environments in the City of Johannesburg," Cooke said.