Meeting the educational needs of our youth is a continuous task - with a lack of resources, suitable buildings and decent sanitation a seemingly never-ending challenge that affects both educators and learners.
Successfully addressing this multitude of needs requires collaborative social investment, public-private partnership and a commitment to empowering communities with the facilities and opportunities they need to thrive.
Tronox – a minerals mining company with operations in KZN and the Western Cape – uses this approach to support education (and thereby local business development and job creation, too) within the communities in which it operates.
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“Tronox has an interest in ensuring that we address the socio-economic challenges of our communities by working closely with non-profitable organisations and different partners with a direct interest in our schools at all levels, to promote high quality education,” explains Nozuko Basson, Regional Manager: Communities and Corporate Affairs.
Without a proper administration office, no school can function efficiently and effectively. And without decent sanitation, schools can not provide the dignified learning environment that children have a right to.
Three schools in KwaZulu-Natal - Inkosi Zenso Primary School, Gubhethuka Primary School and Ensingweni Primary School - were among the most recent beneficiaries of projects funded by Tronox to construct these infrastructure essentials.
Inkosi Zenso Primary School, located on the Mevamhlophe Reserve in Empangeni, now has a purpose-built administration block and three new classrooms. The project, with a contract value of R1.5 million, was completed by locally-based contractor Rosette Corporation. A 100% black women-owned construction business, it employed 12 people for the project – two of whom were women and seven were youths.
Gubhethuka Primary School’s new administration block was up and ready for use in December 2020. The school is located in the Dube area of eSikhaleni, which falls under Inkosi Dube. The project, valued close to R950 000, was completed by on-site contractor N Zwane of the Alson Group. Six people were employed during construction: five youths and one woman.
At Ensingweni Primary School, located in eNsingweni under Inkosi Nzuza, the need for an administration block as well as an ablution facility was identified. The appointed and on-site contractor for the construction of the admin block was ES Mthethwa of Ngangenkukhu Trading. With a contract value of about R940 000, the project created employment for nine people, including one woman and four youths.
The school’s new ablution facility was completed by on-site contractor, Lindani Mthembu of LD Lindani Development. The project was valued at approximately R780 000 and employed seven people, including five youths and one woman.
Dr David Chonco, District Director, Department of Education said: “We appreciate Tronox and have worked together with the company for a number of years. We encourage it to continue with its good work.”