When President Mbeki urged the various Government
Departments to initialise skills development programmes for the youth of
the country, the South African National Defence Force (SANDF) in
partnership with the CSIR responded by instituting the Youth Skills
Development Programme. As a result of the large capital assets that the
SANDF owns in the form of training establishments it was decided to
recruit large numbers of young people into the SANDF.
A new recruit reporting to his instructor as smartly as is
expected of him.
(Photo: Seaman M Venter)
|These young adults will receive a 1-year contract.
During the first year they will receive basic foundation or finishing
training. Due to the large number of people that are trained, it is
envisaged that the majority of them will be sent back into the civilian
sector after their training. Thus the employer in the civilian sector
can recruit young and fit people who have had one years of work
experience in a disciplined environment, who are themselves disciplined
and have a work ethic.
The aim of this new training is not to provide the
youth of the country with military skills, but rather to teach them
basic life skills that are required in a work environment, the military
environment are just used as a platform to instill discipline, routine
and work ethic. The Naval Youth Development Programme provides a sound
foundation of learning with practical application to several skills.
"Dressing by the left, quick march!" Properly dressed
off and ready to move.
(Photo: Seaman M Venter)
|The approach that we at SAS Saldanha have
applied towards training is to create an environment that is conducive
to learning. This is done by encouraging learners to participate in the
classes. The spirit in which our unit conducts Youth Development
Programme (NGP) training is to create a system that will allow a group
of young and fit men and women, who will be selected to either follow a
career in the SA Navy,
or have skills (further to those offered via
secondary education) that will make them more competitive in the private
SAS Saldanha is responsible for the delivery of 3 phases
of the MSD programme, namely:
Induction to the work environment (2
Basic Training: Orientation, life skills and work environment
platform training (12 weeks); and
Development training (35 weeks)
The learners are introduced to a work environment:
The necessary administration is completed,
Medical Evaluations are
The learners are introduced to routine, the importance of
neatness and discipline.
All learners are evaluated for academic and
During Basic Training
Learners are introduced to subjects such as
organisational customs and traditions, Communication, Respect for Rank
Structure, Branch Functions, etc. · Discipline, neatness and routine
are constantly practised and reinforced.
The Youth Development Programme
complete the First Aid Level 1 (accredited) qualification as well
as Fire Fighting and - Prevention (accredited). This course also
course, which teaches the learners how to react in crisis
situations. The learners are exposed to fires and floods environment,
and must then save themselves. The process reinforces teamwork and
enables the learners to cope with crisis situations in their work and
The Sail Training curriculum is accredited with SA Sailing and the
members receive a Deck Hand qualification (accredited) at the end of the
course. In this course the members have to do plenty of sailing onboard
Laser's, Dinghies and Protons. They must also know how to rig these
vessels and focus on safety onboard the vessels. This course enhances
teamwork amongst the members.
This course is five weeks long and is presented at SAS
This course aims to teach every learner the basic computer skills
required to function within the modern work environment. Subjects
include Basic Microsoft Word, Typing and various PLATO courses. Plato is
a computer based training software package and the subjects taken
include Mathematics, Reading and Language Arts. Some of the more
proficient learners are given the opportunity to learn extra programs
such as Microsoft Excel and Microsoft PowerPoint, which are all accepted
in the private sector.
Environmental Warden's Certificate.
This program is one week long and is presented in the Nature Reserve
of SAS Saldanha . This course aims to imprint on the learners the
importance of the Environment upon our everyday tasks and also on how to
practise conservation. Learners are taught in the veld how to reduce and
prevent the effects of erosion and pollution. The course is of course
linked to seamanship; with special emphasis placed on oil pollution and
oil spill contingency plans. This course is accredited to the Department
of Nature Conservation and the certificates are countersigned by the
Cape Nature Conservation Board.
This course consists of a three-week theory phase and a two-week
practical phase and is conducted at SAS Saldanha. Learners are
introduced to the basic functioning of a car, taught to drive the car
and also how to maintain a log/ trip sheet. At the end of the course
they are examined and provided with a drivers licence.
Personal Financial Education.
In this weeklong course the learners are taught the importance of
managing their income, drawing up budgets and the pitfalls that exist
within the modern investment sectors. They are taught how to plan ahead
financially and not to fall into debt traps.
A large percentage of the group are unable to swim on arrival, but
with rigorous training, every member is provided the opportunity to
become a competent swimmer by the time he/she completes the yearlong
Project Management Training.
The objective of this course is to create an awareness of PPM as a
necessary management approach in order to manage a portfolio of projects
as a dynamic integrated process looking at the strategic context in
which the organisation operates, finding out how to identify, generate,
evaluate, select and prioritise projects and to see what the impact of
the final portfolio of projects will have on the organisation and
external environment in the medium to long-term. It is important to note
that the above activities of PPM are structured within a PPM process, in
which the relationship between top management, project portfolio
management and The following sequence of topics will be presented during
the course: ·
Course introduction and administration
Review of project management
"An alternative approach to project
Baseline theory and baseline format.
Life cycle planning and costing
Gate control and the decision-making process
Project portfolio impact analysis
SAS Saldanha: Procurement Training.
Procurement Training for the built environment professionals undergoing
training at SAS Saldanha was conducted over a period of four (4)
The aim of the training was to create an
understanding amongst students regarding: the policy environment within
which procurement takes place in the National Department of Public Works
(NDPW; · the policy imperatives of the South African Government; and ·
technical requirements and demands of procurement in the Public Sector
with special reference to the NDPW
To this affect the training course consisted of the
Current procurement policy;
Content and implications of current delegations;
Content and implications of procurement
Standard operating procedure relating to
procurement within the NPDW.
Components were presented to the students over the
4-day period and include:
Discussion of case studies pertaining to the
lectures in break away groups;
Review and summary by students of all procurement
related legislation and regulations;
Assignments which include a group project to
develop Terms of Reference for a case study;
Group assignment which required the students to
develop a tender document in response to the Terms of Reference; and
Group work that included the setting up of
adjudication structures and adjudicating the tender submitted by the
various syndicate groups.
An 82-slide summary of all the topics covered was
also provided to the students as well as copies of all relevant
Contractor Development Course.
The Contractor Development Course was structured to provide an
understanding of the contractor development environment by looking at
the roles of various project role players such as project managers,
principal agents and, most importantly, the contractor, contractor
challenges and how these can be addressed.
The "2004 Youth Foundation" Students.
(Photo: AB M.J. Pietbooi)
|The case studies focussed on
major failures experienced by contractors on public sector projects. The
students were introduced to the principles of the South African
Construction Excellence Model (SACEM) and how the model works,
particularly the assessment process using the SACEM questionnaire.
Mentorship was also discussed as a critical intervention in the
contractor development programmes. Through presentations and facilitated
group discussion the students were shown how the model as well as
properly structured mentorship addresses a number of problems that faces
small and medium-sized contractors.
An additional module on general business planning was
presented to share understanding of the strategic thinking framework of
entrepreneurs. Training materials distributed comprised of a document on
SME-contractor challenges and the way forward, SACEM assessment report,
case studies and 3 presentations.
Seaman B.D. Roman's family are happy to take him home after a long
year of basic training.
(Photo: AB M.J. Pietbooi)
|On the last day the questionnaire was completed by
students as an appraisal for both the presenter as the course content
and presentation. Judging from this response, the course was well
received by the students and they learned a lot about contractor
development and the various aspects related to procurement of
construction projects using SME-contractors in the public sector.
intensiveness of group discussions everyone's confidence also improved.
Information Technology In Construction.
Information Technology (IT) has become a fundamental instrument for
effective and efficient management of all enterprise functions. In the
built environment, IT also supports daily activities of the built
environment professional, be it in project management, feasibility
studies, cost estimating, design, or day-to-day communication. Apart
from this, IT also fundamentally influences the way in which buildings
are erected and operated. A foundational knowledge of IT is therefore
crucial to the built environment practitioner.
The general objective with this course is to
emphasise understanding rather than memorising, in order to stimulate
creative thinking and the development of innovative skills amongst
students in the field of IT. The emphasis is on equipping the student
with the ability to initiate innovative solutions by means of IT, and
not so much on being able to implement solutions in detail. A
problem-driven approach to learning is followed. Student-centered and
co-operative learning and teaching methods are applied. The following
sequence of topics will be presented during the course:
Computers: Tools for an information age
Construction IT application
Implementing IT systems for business
Introduction to virtual reality in construction
E-business in construction
Construction integrated environments
Construction Management For Small Contractors. Many
small contractors are not trained and/or experienced in cost estimating
or the management of building contracts. This lack of experience very
often leads to clients being exposed to serious cost and time overruns.
The objective of this course is to expose the student to basic cost and
management principles, as well as various contracting models that are
being used in the building and construction industry.
The following topics are presented during the course:
Various forms of contracts
Payment guarantees and payment certificates
Contract price adjustments
The role of the NHBRC
Costing of buildings
Project scheduling and resource balancing
Professional institutions and associations
On completion of the Youth Development Programme, the
Learners will receive certificates for the following:
Plato FASTTRACK English Language Art.
Plato FASTTRACK English Reading.
Plato FASTTRACK Mathematics.
Basic MS Word Skills. · Environmental Maritime
Level 1 Certificate.
Financial management and Career management course
First Aid Level 1.
Fire Prevention and Fire fighting.
NBCD Part 1 Course (Crisis Management).
A valid driver's license.
Introduction to Project Management.
Procurement and Supply Chain Management.
Information Technology for Construction.
Contracts management for small contractors.
Composition of the Naval Gymnasium Programme (NGP) Group
The composition of the learner group adheres to the Government
imperatives for representivity and equity and comprises of roughly the
following: 60% African, 23% Whites, 15% Coloured and 2% Indian and as a
total of which must be 25% female is to be recruited.
Future of the Military Skills Development (MSD) Training
From 2005 onwards, the number of learners that are expected for the
NGP (MSD) programme will be in the region of 650, although there is a
strong possibility that this figure will increase. It must be emphasised
that the concept of NGP (MSD) training in the SANDF is new, and much of
the future planning will only be finalised as we approach the end of
this year's course and apply the lessons that were learnt.
The facilities at SAS Saldanha include modern mess decks (that
can accommodate in excess of 800 learners), adequate classroom space, an
Olympic size swimming pool, a shooting range, sport facilities for 25
different sporting disciplines, a well equipped sick bay, a Jetty area
and a 900ha Nature Reserve for practical training in the veld. A
computer centre with 300 workstations is currently under construction
and should be completed towards the end of the year. The well-qualified
personnel from the Navy employed at SAS Saldanha are a further
asset and contribute to the high level of training that is produced at