As part of its commitment to environmentally sustainable practices, Volkswagen Group South Africa (VWSA) has established a partnership with Community Conservation Fund Africa (CCFA) in support of its “Greening the Community” initiative. CCFA was established by the Mantis Collection.
The partnership will see VWSA contribute significantly to CCFA’s long-term initiative, aimed at empowering communities in KwaNobuhle to drive environmentally responsible practices, especially at schools. The initiative is designed to encourage youth to play their part in ensuring a sustainable future in their communities and beyond.
VWSA’s support for the initiative will take many forms, one of which included the planting of trees at the James Ntungwana Primary School in KwaNobuhle on Friday. The planting, which included citrus trees, hardwood trees and spekboom plants, forms part of a larger effort from CCFA to green school premises in the area. To date, over 400 trees have been sponsored and 303 of them have already been planted in the following schools in KwaNobuhle: VM Kwinana Secondary School, Solomon Mahlangu Secondary School, Thanduxolo Secondary School, Ntlemeza Primary School, James Ntungwana Primary School, Caesar Mlumbi Primary School, Khanya Pre School, Magqabi Primary School, Nokwezi Primary School, Phaphani Secondary School and Sindawonye Primary Farm School. A total of 21 schools in KwaNobuhle will benefit from the initiative.
Beyond the planting of trees, VWSA is sponsoring 20 students from KwaNobuhle to be enrolled in the Siyazenzela Life Skills and Employability course offered by Wilderness Foundation Africa, another VWSA partner. The Siyazenzela course helps young people progress from unemployment to employment by providing them with skills and other education opportunities.
The company also offered its support to local athlete Steven Lancaster in the Everesting Challenge in September, during which Lancaster ran a total distance of 10 509m in laps along the steep Brickmakerskloof Road in Gqeberha, to raise awareness of the CCFA project.
The Greening the Community project not only aligns with VWSA’s priority of promoting environmental sustainability, but also supports the company’s continuous efforts to empower the youth and communities of KwaNobuhle. James Ntungwana Primary, where the tree planting took place, is also one of the five schools at which VWSA operates a literacy centre aimed at improving literacy among learners under the age of 10 years.
VWSA also recently boosted sustainable practices at these schools, by performing plumbing repairs at the five schools – James Ntungwana, Mngcunube Primary, Noninzi Luzipho Primary, Vuba Primary and Ntlemeza Primary. In partnership with the Nelson Mandela Bay Business Chamber, the company also installed water tanks at 15 schools in Nelson Mandela Bay as part of the Adopt-a-School initiative.
“VWSA cares about protecting the environment and about empowering communities, and through supporting CCFA we are able to do both,” said Dr Robert Cisek, VWSA Chairman and Managing Director. “I believe this initiative will bring immense value to the communities of KwaNobuhle, and as VWSA we are proud to do our part through teaching the youth to be environmentally responsible, so they can in turn teach their communities to do the same.”