Petrochemicals giant Sasol announced that it has donated R10 million to a community development project located in Metsimaholo Municipality, in the Free State, which can be seen as part of a broader drive to integrate the business into its surroundings.
Sasol runs a multibillion rands facility in Sasolburg, a town within the Metsimaholo Municipality and has in the past few years been making a major push to be seen as community development force. The R10m donation announced yesterday goes to a project called Rejuvenation Metsimaholo and is part of Sasol’s broader R100 million per year Project Ikusasa.
Such initiatives have become even more critical in the post Marikana era with rising concerns that simmering hostilities within communities surrounding major industrial facilities can be fatalistic.
“We are very proud of our partnership with the Metsimaholo Municipality. This investment will further drive the development of our communities, while building strong and mutually beneficial relationships,” said Maurice Radebe, Group Executive, Corporate Affairs and Enterprise Development, Sasol.
“This contribution will make a significant impact, as we focus on bringing Rejuvenation Metsimaholo closer to the community. Our goal is mobilisation of the community, through the community,” said Ian Kennon, Chairman of the Rejuvenation Trust.
Rejuvenation Metsimaholo, which is a trust governed by its own independent board of directors and operational structures, started in early 2000 as a vehicle to improve the socio-economic development of the Metsimaholo Municipality.
The trust focuses its efforts across specific areas, such as social well-being, safety and security, environment, arts and culture among others. The funds will be used to facilitate the development of projects developed and managed by the communities across these specific areas. Teams responsible for each area engage with communities on a grass-roots level to ascertain the basic needs and challenges they face.
“Rejuvenation Metsimaholo is an excellent example of how we can maintain community participation and ensure that we understand their needs on a micro-level, while enabling them to improve their well-being,” said Radebe.