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Health And Welfare

Dutoit extends support to workers and their families with launch of new Nooitgedacht school facility

Looking after their most cherished workers and their family members has always been a priority for the Dutoit Group, with education being one of the important pillars of their socio-economic development initiatives.

Nooitgedacht, the smallest working farm within the Dutoit stable, had an existing dare care centre but with its growth over the last year, there was a need identified to build a larger facility to accommodate more children, as well as provide an aftercare facility for both younger and older school learners.

 

After two years of planning, ā€œDie Herbergieā€, was officially opened in NovemberĀ 2023, the result of an extensive hall renovation which features the daycare and aftercare facility as well as a kitchen to ensure the provision of nutritious meals for the children. Another room is being prepped to house a computer room in the future.

 

Nooitgedacht in the Koue Bokkeveld, sees 430 permanent workers as well as seasonal workers who underpin the core of the business, caring for, harvesting and packing apples, pears and cherries for the Dutoit Group, which this year celebrates 130 years as a leader in South African agriculture. Nooitgedacht is an important producer for the group and boasts some of the oldest commercial cherry trees in South Africa.Ā 

 

Cherry Time sales and the Dutoit Group as a whole, as well as the Waitrose Foundation, Boland Builders and Link Freight and Logistics all contributed to making this new facility possible. Die Herbergie offers parents a safe and educational space for the little ones in the morning and afternoons, as well as a space for the older children to spend after their school day nearby. It also provides an ideal space for the children to play during cold and rainy weather.

 

ā€œFor Dutoit, our people are our biggest asset and priority. It is because of their hard work and dedication that quality products reach our customers.Ā  We couldnā€™t be prouder to officially open this facility to care for their children, while they care for our produce, and to give these children a great foundation for their futureā€ says Willem Coetzee, CEO of Dutoit Agri. ā€œParents are now able to go to work, knowing that their children and safe and being provided forā€.

 

Staff at the facility include teachers and a medical officer, who also provides healthcare to the workers on the farm with a clinic that is available to them twice a month.Ā Ā 

 

ā€œChildren and their education are of critical importance to our business as they are not only the generation of our ancestors, but also the children of our current generation. Our people should be able to work happily and without worry, knowing that their children are in good hands,ā€ Coetzee says.

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