At Aqunion we understand that businesses do not operate in a vacuum but form part of our communities. As such Aqunion has started a community outreach programme at the Hou Moed centre in Zwehlihle. We are in the process of renovating dilapidated buildings in order to extend the existing Yomelelani Early Childhood Development Centre. This project will increase capacity of the centre to accommodate an additional 90 children.
We are currently expanding the Zwelihle based Yomelelani ECDC. Phase 1 was completed in 2015 and the expansion increased the centre’s capacity from 60 to 110 children, with the additional 50 children already registered for the 2016 year and looking forward to the opportunity of a better education. Phase 2 has now been completed and will allow the centre to accommodate an additional 50 children, taking their total capacity to 160 children.
We became involved in this project when we identified education, specifically Early Childhood Development, as the focus area of our corporate social investment as we believe this is to be the best way, besides job creation, that we could make a positive contribution to the future of the country in a small way.
“Due to the fact that early childhood is the most critical period of a person’s development, it was an obvious choice for us in order to try to make the biggest possible impact on the future of the underprivileged children within our community. We found Yomelelani to be an excellent choice because of the crèche being registered with the Department of Education, having qualified and dedicated staff and having the space for further expansion. It is our intention to extend our efforts to other areas in the Overstrand in years to come.”, commented Jacques du Plessis, Managing Director of Aqunion.
We would like to thank the following companies and individuals for their kind contributions towards the project: Engelbrecht & Scorgie, Hermanus Round Table 267, Charl Jooste & Dean White from Penny Pinchers, Blythe Scorgie from Polyfor, Talisman Hire and Northcliff Private School. A special word of thanks should go to Koos du Toit of 360 Development, as this project would not have been possible without his passion and his willingness to always go the extra mile.
Yomelelani Early Childhood Development Centre is still in need of the following items: kitchen cupboards, a microwave, cots, mattresses, loose carpets, rocking chairs and age appropriate toys.
The need is great in the area of Early Childhood Development facilities in the Overstrand and local businesses are encouraged to get involved with this project as it is a fantastic platform for corporate investment. This is an excellent opportunity for the community to get involved with a sustainable project that can change many lives and create new dreams. Please visit the Yomelelani website www.yomelelani.co.za or contact the General Manager at Yomelelani Pre-School on 084 855 8279.
MANDELA DAY 2016
“It always seems impossible until it’s done.” – Nelson Mandela
In November 2009, the United Nations General Assembly declared, 18 July Nelson Mandela International Day, to honour his birthday. This is the first time that the United Nations (UN) has designated a day dedicated to a person.
The UN has also asked the people of the world to set aside 67 minutes of their day to undertake a task that would contribute to bringing joy or relief to the millions of disadvantaged and vulnerable people of the world. Mandela’s fame rests on his role as a revolutionary leader who spent nearly seven decades of his life in the struggle against white minority rule and for a free and democratic non-racial society.
Nelson Mandela’s greatness lies in the fact that he was a visionary. An international political leader and democrat who exercised his influence and leadership with humility and respect for both colleagues and opponents alike. He was, above all, a man who was stubborn in his resolve to fight all forms of discrimination, injustice and inequality.
“What counts in life is not the mere fact that we have lived. It is what difference we have made to the lives of others that will determine the significance of the life we lead.” – Nelson Mandela
A group of 73 employees of Aqunion Pty Ltd made a difference by giving back to the community in various ways:
- Duifies & Kuifies : Reading books, clay, crayons, playground equipment
- Woelwaters : Sponsored tables, mattresses educational toys
- Rotary Haven : Painting of playground
- Lombardi Dienssentrum : Food parcels, interaction with the elderly
- HAWS : Cleaning of kennels, plastic containers for food distribution
- Beach cleanup : 225 Kg of garbage from Grotto Beach and surrounding areas
Chrizulene van Niekerk has children attending Laerskool Gansbaai and is involved in fundraising for the school. She identified the need to overhaul the school’s netball courts in 2014. For years all school funds had been allocated to more pressing needs, creating a situation where the sporting facilities became in a state of complete disrepair.
After obtaining quotations for the complete overhaul of all 5 courts, she realised that the magnitude of the project would warrant at least two years of fundraising. The school would have to approach it as a project where they provide the town of Gansbaai access to upgraded courts rather than for the exclusive use by the school. Chrizulene worked tirelessly organizing event after event and had raised almost enough to cover what was expected by the end of 2015. Unfortunately, after getting updated quotations at the beginning of 2016, they were still short about a third of the total costs. She realized that she could not spend another year raising the necessary funds, and decided to change tactics.
She came up with a proposal to “sell” the 3 netball courts to 3 major companies in town. The companies would pay a sum in exchange for one of the courts to be named after the company and for its branding to be displayed on that court.
She thus approached Romansbaai Farm with the offer, and after discussing the issue at an Aqunion Management Meeting, it was decided that it would be a great way of getting involved in a visible way in the Gansbaai community.
The other “buyers” were Atlantic Fishing and SPAR and with their buy-in, the outstanding funds were raised to start the refurbishment of the courts.
For Aqunion it was a real pleasure to be involved and work with Chrizulene as she is a fantastic organiser. The end product looks great and as the courts are up against the main street of Gansbaai, it improves the general look of the town.
It was wonderful to be part of this process and Aqunion very proud to have our name displayed so prominently on the facilities of such a deserving school.