SIX REFUGEE women who successfully completed their studies in home-based care have been honoured at a graduation ceremony held at the Agency for Refugee Education, Skills Training and Advocacy (Aresta) office.
Aresta is a non-profit organisation that works within the refugee and asylum seekers field in Cape Town and East London.
As part of its refugee livelihoods strategy, Aresta has been providing skills training and development to refugees and asylum seekers to better equip them to find employment as well as to better integrate them into their host communities, which in turn will improve the livelihoods of their families.
Department of health international and intergovernmental relations head Andiswa Mayekiso, a guest at the graduation, congratulated the women and highlighted that it had not been an easy journey, but said the graduates had persevered.
“This is just a step in the right direction. When it comes to education, never stop. As long as there are doors open, get in and get educated,” Mayekiso said.
She also said that refugees were integrated into South African society and enjoyed full democratic rights and benefits.
The aim of Aresta is to contribute to successful integration as a solution for asylum seekers and refugees through advocacy, training, skills development, education and research.
Aresta acting director Vuyo Ntlangu applauded the graduates for persevering and succeeding, through thick and thin.
“We did not give them food, because we wanted to empower them with education so that they are able to find jobs and feed their families. We want to ensure that they are self-dependant,” he said.
The graduates were issued with certificates and will be able to apply for work in South Africa.