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Free State Business 2022

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FOCUS Rethink,

FOCUS Rethink, Restrategise, Reconnect Focus on SMMEs at Youth Empowerment Week. From left: Jade Wheelock, Trio-Plus, Lebogang Mphaka, De Beers Group De Beers Voorspoed Mine, in partnership with My Arts International, held the 12th Mangaung Youth Empowerment Week in April 2021. Free State SMMEs were invited to the event in order to gain a better understanding of their challenges within the business world as well as for them to connect with other SMMEs. The theme for the event was to Rethink, Restrategise and Reconnect. Through the De Beers Voorspoed Mine’s GODISA Programme, facilitated by Trio-plus Development, entrepreneurs were introduced to the programme and its benefits at the Youth Empowerment week held earlier in 2021. GODISA, which stands for Growth, Opportunities, Decision-making, Innovation, System and Accountability/Action, coaches, mentors and trains with the aim of creating selfsufficient businesses. During the event, one of the De Beers Zimele entrepreneurs, S’busisiwe Sithebe, the owner of Buska Foods, was provided an opportunity to showcase her products and share her personal growth journey as well as some of the challenges she has encountered during this journey. Our commitment and desire to actively encourage the development of our local SMMEs has enabled the GODISA programme to “Make Life Brilliant” in our communities, especially in addressing the impact of Covid-19 on small businesses. Over 40 local SMMEs are enrolled for the GODISA programme for the 2021 period, as part of long-term business sustainability plans beyond Voorspoed’s life-of-mine. Chief Director Denis Ackulay, from My Arts International, emphasised that, “The Mangaung Youth Empowerment Week remains a shining example of what can be achieved when a group of young professionals are serious enough about their futures.” ■ Busi Sithebe Buska Foods and Lebogang Mphaka, De Beers Group FREE STATE BUSINESS 2022 34

FOCUS De Beers Voorspoed Mine hands over water-testing laboratory Cleaner and safer water for Parys. From left: Temba Malunga, Director Technical Support, Ngwathe Local Municipality; Petrus Jordaan, Closure Manager, Voorspoed Mine; Cllr Philemon Ndayi, Chief Whip and MMC for Infrastructure; CIIr Joey Mochela, Exclusive Mayor; Kalipa Kewuti, Regional Manager, Department of Mineral Resources and Energy; Lebogang Mphaka, Corporate Affairs Manager, De Beers Voorspoed Mine; Sellwane Mok, Director SLP, Department of Mineral Resources and Energy. De Beers Voorspoed Mine, in partnership with Ngwathe Local Municipality and the Department of Mineral Resources and Energy, unveiled a R2.2-million newly renovated and furnished water-testing laboratory on 22 September 2021. The handover of the laboratory is part of the mine’s efforts through the Social and Labour Plan to support the municipality with its Integrated Development Plan (IDP) projects and will play a vital role in water-quality testing to ensure safer and cleaner water for the community of Parys. During the handover, Ngwathe Local Municipality’s Executive Mayor, Councillor Joey Mochela, said that one of the common denominators of service delivery protests was water and sanitation. She further indicated that, to date, Parys and Tumahole both have 98 JoJo tanks, four pump stations, four reservoirs, one water treatment and a borehole. “This water-testing laboratory will help us find lasting solutions to water purification and shortage challenges in our areas,” she said. A local small, medium and micro-enterprise, Ramokgwera Trading & Projects (Pty) Ltd, was selected as the main contractor for the laboratory renovations. In contributing to local short-term employment, eight temporary job opportunities were offered to community members, who were able to gain experience and training for future opportunities on other projects. Voorspoed Mine’s Corporate Affairs Manager, Lebogang Mphaka, said, “Water is essential, even more so during the present pandemic. As De Beers Group, we recognise how essential it is to collaborate with our communities and commit to creating a lasting legacy through sustainable projects like this.” In delivering a speech during the ceremony, Department of Mineral Resources and Energy’s Regional Manager, Kalipa Kewuti, emphasised the importance of mining companies complying in terms of achieving their Social and Labour Plan objectives to benefit the host communities sustainably, from a regulatory perspective. “We applaud Voorspoed Mine for being compliant,” she said. ■ 35 FREE STATE BUSINESS 2022

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