The Heritage Careers Expo is an initiative of the Department of Higher Education and Training in partnership with the Department of Science and Technology aimed at showcasing and highlighting career opportunities in what has been identified as heritage sectors.
The Expo covers careers across various economic sectors including Food, Fashion, Beauty, Hair, Arts, Funeral and Tourism, among others.
The Services SETA has participated as one of the SETAs through its 3 subsectors that are aligned with our heritage those being, Beauty and Hair, Fashion, and the Funeral industry.
As part of its programmes in the Expo, the Services SETA held Roundtables wherein various aspects of the select industries were discussed.
On the 27th of May, the Services SETA hosted a roundtable for the Burial industry.
Various major players were invited to come and share their experiences with young people and provide guidance on the various career opportunities available in the industry, including ways to make inroads into the sector.
The panel was anchored by well-known communications expert Mr Victor Kgomoeswana. Panelists were Mr John Storom from the United Funeral Directors Association, Ms Elsabe Basilio, from the Independent Funeral Directors Association, Dr Lawrence Konyana from the National Funeral Directors Association, Mr Muzi Hlengwa from the National Funeral Practitioners Association of South Africa, and Ms Nomfundo Mcoyi from the South African Funeral Practitioners Association.
One of the opportunities cited was the possibility of offering a service as a fleet manager in the sector. Because of the extensive use of vehicles in the industry, the industry offers opportunities for enterprising individuals to acquire fleets and hire them out to the various funeral service providers. In this way, they will be providing a service to the industry and growing in a highly intensive industry.
Besides morticians, the funeral industry also has opportunities for professional drivers who could take advantage of the many driver opportunities available.
More artistic individuals could find work in the highly competitive tombstone side of the business where they could become craftsmen and women.
Other opportunities included flower arrangements. Because flowers and wreaths form an important part of the burial ritual, someone with a passion for flowers and décor could follow this stream of the industry. Alternatively, a flower grower could enter into an arrangement with funeral service providers to provide them with the flower stock for their flower arrangements.
From the roundtable, it was very evident that the career opportunities offered by this industry went far beyond simply dealing with the handling of corpses.