In keeping with a holistic approach, the Lonmin Community Education programme focuses on a value chain consisting of five vital areas infrastructure, nutrition, learners, teachers and parents. We embrace all phases of the schooling process from early childhood development (ECD), through middle school and high school, to tertiary level and finally to the workplace - a leg of our programme that links with Lonmin recruitment to offer meaningful careers for our bursary holders, many of whom are from the GLC. In adopting a holistic method we are able to improve overall support and development not only in education but also in Health, LED and Enterprise Development, on a sustainable level.
The value chain serves as our template to building better education and better communities as a whole. The five areas we embrace are:
- infrastructural development, focusing on the upgrade of school facilities and other resources;
- nutritional support, ensuring that our children have full tummies when they learn;
- learner support, which includes extra lessons and career guidance;
- teacher support, providing training and motivational workshops to the educators; and
- guidance to the parents, offering training on the School Governance Body, plus a “grapevine” SMS system enabling schools to communicate with them.
Also, Lonmin’s Education Programme is able to tap into the value chain to assess the current initiatives, which includes learners’ performances. Through this process decisions can be made regarding the tertiary routes the students should follow. There are three different areas:
- The formal academic route - learners enter into the Maths and Science Programme to obtain bursaries and receive graduate development;
- Technical skills learners will enter into a technical high school and into a Learnership Programme to become artisans;
- The unemployed youth they will feed into the Mining Related and Portable Skills Programmes in order to enter into the labour pool and obtain SMME development.
The value chain begins in education but is ultimately all-encompassing, influencing the GLC on all levels, proving that community investment begins with a quality educational programme and that excellent return on investment (ROI) starts with investing in our youth.
Improving access to comprehensive primary healthcare within the GLC is a priority at Lonmin and we have already instituted a number of healthcare services through our Community Health Programme, including proper medical examinations, intensive health promotion and education and the upgrading of healthcare facilities.
Our aim was to provide the majority of our communities with access to decent primary healthcare by 2012. This goal has in fact been realised and the GLC are now provided with upgraded clinics, situated within 5kms of their homes, and an excellent voluntary peer educator and home-based carer programme has been introduced as a way of promoting healthcare and educating the people. Over and above this Lonmin’s Community Health Programme runs a mobile health facility that services our schools and linked to this is a nutrition programme for orphaned and vulnerable children (OVCs).
Lonmin allocated sizeable funds to the refurbishment of GLC clinics, namely the Marikana, Wonderkop, Modderspruit and Segwaelane Clinics, which have now all been successfully completed because of our fully trained Peer Educators and Home-based Carers we have seen a marked improvement in HIV/AIDS awareness and the treatment thereof throughout the GLC.
Local Economic Development
The key purpose of both the Local Economic Development and Enterprise Development Programmes is to boost our economy and, by partnering with our government stakeholders, we have successfully invested a number of primary infrastructure and job creation initiatives.
Our Local Economic Development Programme has been specifically designed as a way to effectively partner with local authorities and government in addressing and providing basic service needs to the GLC. We successfully achieve this through the development and implementation of social infrastructure, capital projects, and healthcare and education infrastructure.
We go about choosing our projects by consulting with the GLC, ward councillors and the local municipalities, ultimately ensuring that the needs of our communities are being identified and addressed correctly.
The Lonmin LED Programme has three main focus areas which are:
- Basic Service Infrastructure: Water and Sanitation, which has seen the provision of infrastructure, yard connections, water reticulation and sewer systems to hundreds of households within our communities, and includes the delivery of ablution facilities to schools;
- Job Creation, which includes contracting local suppliers and companies owned by HDSAs (Historically Disadvantaged South Africans) to work with us on our infrastructure development projects; and
- Capacity Building, which involves the assessment and identification of delivery challenges and the creation of effective institutions through the increase of shared knowledge resources, relational resources and the capacity for efficiency.
Sustainable development of local communities in South Africa would not thrive without a vibrant and functional local economy. Our Enterprise Development Programme provides a much needed boost to our local economies through an integrated SMME development programme, which includes both training and identification of contracting opportunities, implemented by our Procurement Department. In doing this we continue to grow the number of GLC black-owned and black-women-owned suppliers on Lonmin’s preferred supplier database, which we can tap into whenever we are looking to construct or upgrade our communities’ clinics and schools.
The whole idea of our Enterprise Development Programme is to produce sustainable businesses within the GLC that are able to, in turn, provide employment to the locals and create wealth for the business owners. In order for us to achieve this we initiated a Local Supplier Development Program whereby we contract local businesses as our suppliers, and a Joint Venture Programme, designed to aid local skills and development by enabling emerging local suppliers to partner with outside experts in order to foster the transferal of skills. We have been witness to a number of successful Joint Ventures being established, which now provide much needed job opportunities to our local communities. As a move to empower the local suppliers, they hold at least 51% ownership.
Lonmin has also devised an intensive development programme providing small business training. Over 1000 individuals have already seen the benefits of the coaching, averaging about 19 companies, which are now geared to operate successfully. We also facilitate access to finance for our small businesses and provide mentorship through the development process.
Developing Relationships with our Communities for our Communities
At the core of our relationship with the GLC is a meticulous and often challenging stakeholder mapping and engagement process which plays a vital role in creating an enabling environment for meaningful interaction, partnership formation and development intervention, ultimately bringing about positive transformation.
The symbiotic relationship between Stakeholder Engagement and the Education, Health, Enterprise Development and Local Economic Development streams of the Lonmin Community Development Programme is responsible for the highly effective delivery of holistic community development.
Improvement to infrastructure, ware and sanitation, health and teaching facilities and vibrant local economies within our communities are largely due to our beneficial stakeholder relationships. Without these fundamental partnerships the people of the GLC would not be enjoying better living conditions.
The Lonmin Social and Labour Plan (SLP) guides our Community Investment Programme. In order to avoid any duplication and to make sure that our development projects address the identified needs of our communities, we have aligned our SLP with the IDP’s of Madibeng and Rustenburg municipalities in the Northwest, Limpopo and the Eastern Cape.