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South African Youth Accelerator recognised for use of big data to solve youth unemployment

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South African Youth Accelerator recognised for use of big data to solve youth unemployment
South African Youth Accelerator recognised for use of big data to solve youth unemployment

On Wednesday, 25 July 2018, Harambee Youth Employment Accelerator was one of only two organisations featured on stage at the Google NEXT 2018 conference in Silicon Valley. Launching Data Solutions for Change, Google highlighted Harambee’s use of big data solutions to solve real-world challenges like youth unemployment. Google also invited the 20,000 participants at NEXT to join the Go Google Transform challenge that crowdsourced innovative solutions to scale Harambee’s impact.

Harambee CEO Maryana Iskander said, “Harambee’s platform is designed to break down the barriers that keep unemployed youth out of opportunity. We are successfully using some of the world’s leading technologies, including a Google Cloud platform that supports cutting-edge geolocation, data analytics and ‘algorithmic matching’, to move young people closer to work.”


Harambee has collected data from more than 1.4 million unemployed youth through digital applications as well as on the phone and in person to build its ‘employability map’ that provides pathways for young people. Harambee has what is believed to be the largest dataset on youth unemployment trends in South Africa.

Evan Jones, Harambee CIO added, “Google support means a lot to us and gives us even more credibility with employers as we work to solve the problem of youth unemployment in South Africa. But this is a worldwide problem, and Google Cloud Platform gives us global reach and shows a commitment to support our future goals.”

Launched in 2011, Harambee has to date placed more than 55 000 young South Africans in long-term employment. With partners like Google, it’s able to scale its efforts to put half a million young unemployed South Africans on an earning pathway by 2022.

Edited by Fundisiwe Maseko
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