Category: <span>Cater Care</span>

14 March 2022 Media Release: Garden Route DM reaches a decade of ongoing support for Cater Care Students

Media Release: Garden Route DM reaches a decade of ongoing support for Cater Care Students

For Immediate Release
14 March 2022

“Believe in yourself and all that you are. Know that there is something inside you that is greater than any obstacle.”Christian D. Larson NEW THOUGHT LEADER

Twenty-one (21) students who formed part of the 2nd intake of the current three-year (2020 till 2023­) Francois Ferreira Academy (FFA) Cater Care Programme were recently honoured for successfully completing the course. Their intake was on 7 September 2021.

The Garden Route District Municipality (GRDM) appointed the Francois Ferreira Academy for three (3) years through a formal tender process as the service provider to roll out the Cater Care Programme. The GRDM Council has once again approved R450 000.00 for the 2021/2022 financial year towards this programme.

The GRDM Cater Care Training Programme is a partnership between GRDM and the FFA. It provides training and ensures that students are placed in hospitality establishments to gain practical work experience during their studies. This partnership started ten (10) years ago, with ABSA Bank being the primary sponsor; however, the GRDM is now solely responsible for funding this Programme.

The Programme also aims to train previously disadvantaged youth in the hospitality sector. As a result of this program, unemployed and impoverished youth have gained culinary skills to help them secure employment in the hospitality and tourism industries.

During an official certificate handover ceremony held on 10 February 2022, Veronica Mekile, Project Administrator and Life-skills Facilitator, provided a brief overview of the course. What stood out from her speech was the joy and satisfaction the FFA team experiences when they observe a student’s progress. She also shared that the Cater Care course at FFA is more than just about cooking – they added a life skills section to the course too. This helps to build students’ self-esteem and confidence and helps mould positive attitudes.


During the welcoming, a very proud GRDM Executive Manager of Planning and Economic Development, Lusanda Menze expressed his gratitude and said that he always looks forward to attending these life-changing ceremonies. “Listening to the testimonies today is an example of what we come up with when we sit in our offices and think it is a miniature contribution from the municipality, but during these kinds of events, we witness how our ideas shape the lives of people.” He referred to the Statistics SA unemployment rate, which found more than 60% of youth are unemployed, including people with university degrees and diplomas.  This course is important because several young people are absorbed into the job market or start their own businesses,” Menze said.


Adv. Gert van Niekerk confirmed that the GRDM had committed itself to the Cater Care Programme for the 2021/22 financial year and that it will strive to continue to make a positive impact in the lives of the communities. He congratulated and thanked the FFA for their remarkable job in training, development, and alleviation of poverty and unemployment in the district.  Adv. van Niekerk said that this programme would not have been successful without their hard work, dedication, and commitment.

He congratulated the students with the following words, “We as the Garden Route District Municipal Council wish you well with your future plans; we hope you will be successful in everything you do, and we are very proud of you”.  He concluded his address by encouraging the students with words a mentor shared with him years ago when he was on the verge of receiving his qualification – “To achieve what you have achieved is the easy part. Dedication, study, practice and determination brought you here, where you received your diploma as recognition today. Now comes the difficult part; to be worthy of that diploma. In the years to come, wherever life may take you, be worthy of this day. You’ve worked hard for it; you deserve it, now it is in your hands. I do trust that you will do as such,” he said.

The ceremony was complemented by the following remarks from Chef François Ferreira, “This may be regarded by some only as a skill qualification, but the action goes far beyond it.  You have specific skills, and it is in your hands to decide how to use them. You can prepare food at home or start your own business. A variety of programmes are available to help young entrepreneurs get started. It is entirely up to you!”

The success of this flagship programme is as follows:

  • Cater Care – 89% success rate in placing learners in sustainable jobs;
  • 70% of learners placed on a career path by qualifying for NYCTP course; and
  • Some learners have already finished their Diploma in Food Preparation and Patisserie.

As GRDM, we are proud to acknowledge that more than 200 individuals have successfully completed training through this programme over the past decade.



28 October 2021 Media Release: Another 22 students to reap fruits from Garden Route DM Cater Care Programme

Media Release: Another 22 students to reap fruits from Garden Route DM Cater Care Programme

For Immediate Release
28 October 2021

A successful partnership of approximately ten (10) years between the Garden Route District Municipality (GRDM) and the Francois Ferreira Academy (FFA) continues as GRDM recently appointed them for three (3) more years until 2023. Youth continue to be equipped with vital skills in the hospitality industry after Council availed R450 000.00 for this programme for the next 12 months.

With plenty of opportunities offered by the hospitality and tourism industry, previously disadvantaged youth are the core focus of the programme.

The FFA received 300 applications, of which 63 were shortlisted for interviews. After that, 22 youth were selected to be part of the programme.  The interview panel consisted of officials and lecturers from the FFA and GRDM Tourism and EPWP representatives.

Three (3) weeks into the programme and students already completed their theoretical training. They started practical cooking classes on 25 October, which will end on 17 November 2021. Students will apply this knowledge in the kitchen. Towards the end of November 2021, students will be given the opportunity to enter the industry to get on-job training and experience. The training programme will end in December 2021, and the certificate handover ceremony will take place during mid-January 2022.

Today, during a ‘meet-and-greet’ by the GRDM Deputy Executive Mayor, Alderlady Rosina Ruiters and Cllr Erica Meyer, Alderlady Ruiters encouraged students to seize every opportunity they are given in life and to grab it with both hands.  She wished them well with the training programme and all their future endeavors.

30 August 2021 Notification: Cater Care (Food Handler) Training Programme

The Garden Route District Municipality (GRDM), through its 3-month Cater Care (Food Handler) Training Programme, aims to train previously disadvantaged individuals and unemployed youth in the hospitality sector. This programme serves as a stepping stone to Garden Routers who are interested in developing culinary skills and strengthening the local hospitality industry. Each student will be given an opportunity to gain a theoretical understanding of food handling and be allowed to gain practical experience at a business too.

This year the course takes place from September 2021 till December 2021.


Must be a SA Citizen; Aged 18-30; Unemployed; School Qualification Grade 10 to Grade 12; Must have a bank account; Must have a Tax number; Eager to shape a career in the hospitality industry; Reside in the Garden Route DM area.


Prospective learners must apply in person at the Francois Ferreira Academy by completing an application form.

All applicants must bring their CV, certified ID Copy, and school results. Certification of documents must not be older than 3 months. Letter from the bank confirming their account. Must have a contact cell phone number plus an alternative number.

Address: Francois Ferreira Academy, Mount View Resort, 1 York Street, George. Office hours: 08:00 – 16:30 (Mon-Thu); 08:00-15:00 (Fri). Contact Ms Veronica Mekile if you have any questions or e-mail or call 044 884 0765.


*All successful candidates are responsible for their own accommodation arrangements and transport and only serious and committed applicants will be considered for this opportunity.

12 June 2021 Media Release: The world is your oyster, and nothing can keep you back!

Media release: The world is your oyster, and nothing can keep you back!

For Immediate Release
17 June 2021

”You determine your future, and you have now been equipped with the necessary skills in the culinary arts. So, decide to choose prosperity to enrich your lives and build on the stepping stones provided to you through this programme.”  With these words, Alderlady Georlene Wolmarans, a Councillor at Garden Route District Municipality (GRDM), encouraged students during their Cater Care graduation ceremony.

On Friday, 10 June 2021, 20 students who attended the Francois Ferreira Academy (FFA) Cater Care programme received recognition for triumphantly completing a three (3) month-long training programme. This year’s Cater Care programme officially kicked off on 01 March 2021.

With many opportunities offered by the hospitality and tourism industry in the region, the GRDM, in collaboration with the Francois Ferreira Academy, identified a skills development programme to help youth step into the job market.  This programme aims to train previously disadvantaged youth in the hospitality field. The district’s hospitality sector needs are incrementally addressed through this initiative, with more youth becoming upskilled to expedite economic growth in the area.

During the graduation ceremony, Chef Francois Ferreira, founder and Principal of the Academy, refers to the current intake of students as the most energetic group they trained to date.  He said: “This is the first group in the Cater Care Food handler programme whom we’ve received calls from all the Executive Chefs from the various restaurants; commending them on their attitudes and good work ethic”.  He further elaborated that most Executive Chefs indicated that they would like to employ these students down the line. “You made us proud,” Chef Ferreira concluded.

The GRDM Tourism Unit is responsible for coordinating funding alongside the Expanded Public Works Programme (EPWP) Unit, which arranges learners’ stipends. The Francois Ferreira Academy is the appointed service provider who provides the training for these students and also ensures that students are placed in hospitality establishments to gain practical work experience whilst attending the course.

Alderlady Wolmarans concluded her speech by encouraging students with a quote from the late President of South Africa, Nelson Rolihlahla Mandela. “To the youth of today, I also have a wish to make – be the scriptwriters of your destiny and feature yourselves as stars that showed the way towards a brighter future.”

3 May 2021 Media Release: Garden Route DM: Nineteen (19) youth being up-skilled for Food Handling

Media Release: Garden Route DM: Nineteen (19) youth being up-skilled for Food Handling

For Immediate Release
3 May 2021

Alderman Memory Booysen, Executive Mayor, and Ald. Rosina Ruiters, Deputy Executive Mayor for GRDM, recently visited nineteen (19) Cater Care students at the Francois Ferreira Academy (FFA) in George. Between the ages of 18 and 35, these students are currently busy studying a 3-month Food Handler Qualification (level 2). GRDM’s goal with this Programme is to address the high unemployment rate of South Africa and the Garden Route.

Ald. Memory Booysen, GRDM Executive Mayor (wearing a chain) and Ald. Rosina Ruiters, Deputy Executive Mayor (left of Ald. Booysen) with Cllr Rowan Spies (member of the Education, Training and Development Committee) with students and representatives from the Francois Ferreira Academy.

Alderman Memory Booysen also has a history of working in the hospitality industry and said: “The hospitality industry remains one of the key drivers of the Garden Route economy, and we will continue to fund these types of training initiatives to complement the industry”.

He further added: “The proof is in the pudding – we have supported the up-skilling of 82 youth since starting at this Council in 2016.”

“More than R1 million has been spent since 2016 on the Cater Care Programme,” Booysen said.

The Quality Council for Trades & Occupations (QCTO) accredited SAQA Course (110644) consists of the following subjects:

  1. Introduction to Professional Cookery
  2. Personal Safety
  3. Workplace Safety
  4. Food Safety
  5. Numeracy and Units of Measurement
  6. Preparation Methods
  7. Production Methods

In addition to the seven (7) modules, each student will be allowed the opportunity to gain in-service training at a restaurant or hotel for ten (10) days. After that, students will officially graduate by the end of May 2021.

Feature Image Caption: Ald. Memory Booysen is shown how to safely handle a knife when cutting vegetables. With him is Mr Lwandile Green (left), Ms Siyamthanda Mahe (2nd from right) and Chef Jean-Marie Basson from Francois Ferreira Academy.

Editor’s note:

  • The Quality Council for Trades and Occupations (QCTO) is a Quality Council established in 2010 in terms of the Skills Development Act (Act 97 of 1998) as amended in 2008.
  • The Department f Higher Education and Training (DHET) oversees this part of the National Qualifications Framework (NQF).
  • The QCTO is one of three Quality Councils (QCs) responsible for a part of the National Qualifications Framework (NQF).