Saving the economy in decline.Date Released: Fri, 15 April 2016 12:54 +0200
Assumption Development Centre (ADC) launched its model of socio-economic development on 12 April in Joza.
The model is designed to empower the community by providing residents with crucial skills needed in the workplace, as well as to start their own businesses.
According to Margie Keaton of the ADC, the model is built on partnerships and through networks around the country. “We borrowed and we shared and put together a set of programmes that are tried and tested.”
“The first step in this process is starting a city-wide movement of SaveAct savings clubs. What sets these clubs apart from other initiatives is that everybody who is part of the programme, knows that in other parts of Grahamstown there are other people mobilising their own financial resources, working in spirit of community and neighbourliness”, said Keaton.
The ADC encourages the community to join forces in order to improve the economy of Grahamstown. We need “to move away from working in isolation of one another in little bubbles (to) bringing everyone who works in that development space together, and if one works collectively, the energy, the expertise, the more co-ordinated, cohesive kind of approach to it has got to translate to more impact,” commented Di Hornby, chairperson of the ADC board.
The model is set to remedy the local economy. “Our economy is in decline. There aren’t new businesses coming to Grahamstown. There are no jobs being created – we need to find new ways to create new opportunities for young people. We can wait for someone to do it or we can stand up and join hands,” said Keaton.
And one of the companies creating such opportunities is Makana Brick. Lunga Twaku, Human Resources manager, said that they recruit trainees from the ADC. David Greybe, founder of the centre, approached Makana Brick to employ matriculants as interns. Some of the interns have been incorporated into the company.
Another person who has seen value of the ADC is Andiswa Stofu, of Enhanced Aloes. Stofu makes organic soap. She started her business last year after being approached by the ADC and Rhodes Enactus, who has set the foundation for her business. “I wouldn’t be standing here with so much confidence if it wasn’t for ADC. Whenever we feel like we are falling, they always encourage us why we started.”
The executive mayor, Cllr Nomhle Gaga, accompanied bv acting municipal manager, Riana Meiring, were also present. Gaga praised the ADC for its contribution to the community and applauded the model. “It is evident that the model presented here was crafted by the community for the community.”
The training for aspiring entrepreneurs kicks off on 18 April at the ADC offices. Anyone between the ages of 18 and 35 years is encouraged to participate in the programme.
Source: Grocott's Mail, 15 April 2016