Beefmaster Group, Kimberley’s largest private employer, is assisting to get the Homevale Wastewater Treatment Plant back to a working condition.
The company, who started work on the project in June 2021 and is investing a few million Rands into the project, aims to get the plant up and running within seven months.
“We have committed to assist in these repairs in an effort to ease the burden on the municipality. We felt that it was the right thing to do, given that we have been invested in the community for over 18 years and want to continue to play a part in the improvement of socio-economic conditions in the area,” says Roelie van Reenen, Supply Chain Executive at Beefmaster Group.
The project will also create approximately 20 temporary jobs, which will help to raise the socio-economic profile of the immediate Kimberley community over the medium term.
Although the maintenance and upkeep of public infrastructure falls outside of the responsibility of Beefmaster Group, the Group decided to help due to the impact of the plant’s continual breakdown on the safety and invest-ability of the area.
This news has been welcomed by local businesses and residents in the area, who rely on the treatment plant to effectively dispose of waste in the area.
Beefmaster Group and the Sol Plaatje Municipality will be working together on the repairs. Beefmaster Group is providing skilled labour over the medium term to fix, repair and maintain the treatment plant.
Van Reenen says finding a solution requires input from various stakeholders.
“We want to be part of the solution. Any problem that impacts the safety or invest-ability of our community is our problem as a collective to solve. If a business has the expertise to help solve a problem that causes a huge risk to many, it should do so,” concludes van Reenen.
Since being invested in Kimberley since 2003, Beefmaster Group has created 600 jobs and continues to make an impact in the area. It recently announced that it would scale up its production plant in Kimberley by investing more than R30 million into equipment upgrades and creating an estimated 30 new jobs. Furthermore, it will also spend approximately R1.2 million in improving the socio-economic conditions of impoverished areas in and around the Kimberley area, given the dire need, representing an increase of 70% compared to 2020. This is significant given the recent spate of disinvestment from corporate companies in areas where communities are reliant on them for job security, income and upliftment of socio-economic conditions.