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Community Affairs

At the heart of PetroSA's culture lies an uncompromising commitment to uplifting and developing South African society, especially among previously disadvantaged communities. We recognise that we have a transformative role to play in giving everyone in our country the opportunities to make the most of their talents and achieve a decent standard of living.
 
Structured, targeted policy
Our vision for South Africa goes well beyond the cheque book. With the emphasis on sustainability, our most urgent priority is to ensure that our Community Affairs policy delivers long-term, tangible benefits to people at grassroots level. Ultimately, we measure the returns on our community investment according to the sense of hope, pride and ownership it fosters among communities.
 
To maximise returns on our community investment, we structure and target our Community Affairs policy around four core areas:
EducationEducation
HealthHealth
CommunityCommunity Development
EnvironmentEnvironment and Sustainable Development.
 
Follow these links to read about our current projects and past projects.
 
Long-term partnerships
We work in close partnership with community representatives, key stakeholders at all levels of national and local government as well as non-governmental organisations to ensure our Community Affairs programme delivers long-term, tangible benefits.
 
Any queries please email communityaffairs@petrosa.co.za.
 
Apply for Funding
If you plan to apply for financial support through our Community Affairs programme, it is essential that you study the funding policy below. We do not sponsor initiatives unless they align with our policy. You can access the application form here. 
  
Our five key focus areas are: 
  • Education (30% of spending)
  • Health (25%)
  • Community Development (20%)
  • Environment and Sustainable Development (20%)
  • Ad hoc projects that deserve support/funding etc. (5%)
We are guided by the need to: 
  • Focus on communities in which the company operates, as well as 
    labour- sending areas
  • Emphasise investments in disadvantaged communities
  • Support programmes that promote community empowerment and 
    socio-economic development
  • Support programmes that contribute towards building the corporate
    brand by positioning PetroSA as a caring company.

EducationEducation
South Africa needs educated, skilled and literate citizens to help it grow and develop a thriving economy. Without access to decent schools, dedicated teachers, books and other resources, children  face an uphill battle to educate themselves and improve their lives.

To help address these needs, PetroSA’s Community Affairs programme supports new and existing primary and secondary schools serving disadvantaged communities by providing:

  • Basic school infrastructure, including buildings, ablution facilities and classrooms
  • Science, life skills and computer laboratories and assistance with maintaining these facilities
  • Mathematics and science learner support programmes, as well as teacher training and development programmes
  • Training to develop the capacity of school management bodies at funded schools.

 HealthHealth
PetroSA’s Community Affairs programme aims to address the country’s primary healthcare challenges by providing:

  • Assistance to organisations and projects administering treatment for terminal diseases, including hospitals, clinics, hospices and home-based career programmes
  • Healthcare infrastructure in disadvantaged communities where there is an absence or lack of healthcare facilities.

 CommunityCommunity Development
PetroSA aims to support the development of communities where we operate by investing in non-profit organisations and projects nominated by our staff. The focus is on improving living conditions and the quality of life among the communities our people live in.
In addition, PetroSA provides funding under its Community Development focus area for:

  • Disaster relief responses and initiatives
  • Early Childhood Development (ECD) projects and programmes
  • Industry-wide CSI initiatives, such as the Integrated Energy Centres
  • Projects and programmes that support the disabled.

EnvironmentEnvironment and Sustainable Development
South Africa faces major environmental challenges in the 21st century. These include threats posed to the health of humans and other species by pollution and lack of effective waste management; climate change; and the over-exploitation of resources. Other issues include threats to biodiversity from alien invasive species and to habitat transformation as a result of poorly planned development.

In response, PetroSA’s social investment in conservation and the environment goes towards programmes that contribute to developing and enhancing the environment for disadvantaged communities where we operate. To this end, we support:

  • Environmental education programmes
  • Greening programmes which provide trees and parks to schools and public spaces
  • Environmental clean-up programmes and initiatives

We give preference to projects that provide some form of job creation in their implementation.


Current Projects 

 EducationEducation
Northern Cape
Reneilwe Primary School, Galeshewe
PetroSA has funded the construction of a multi-sports court that caters for tennis, netball, volleyball and basketball players at Reneilwe Primary School. In addition, we funded the renovation of the girls’ and boys’ ablution facilities; and a computer room with 28 computers, an interactive whiteboard and a server room.
 
Northern Cape
Boitshoko Primary School, Galeshewe
PetroSA has committed to building a school hall at Boitshoko Primary School in Galeshewe, Kimberley. The objective is to boost infrastructure programmes in historically disadvantaged areas.
 
Western Cape
Siyazingisa Primary School, Gugulethu
PetroSA has committed to constructing a sick bay and conversion of three classrooms into fully equipped e-learning classroom technology centers.
 
The initiative comes as the Western Cape Department of Education (WCED) embarks on a programme dedicated to delivering e-learning through a classroom technology platform that comprises a learning management system and a curriculum website.
 
Mpumalanga
Primary schools’ numeracy programme, Bushbuckridge
Implemented by the non-profit making educational organisation Maths Centre, the primary schools’ numeracy programme involves 10 primary schools in Bushbuckridge, Thulamahashe Bohlabela District, Mpumalanga.
 
The initiative aims to improve numeracy levels among teachers and learners alike. Its objectives are aligned with the Department of Basic Education’s strategy to ensure that 60% of learners in Grades 3, 6 and 9 perform at an acceptable level in languages and mathematics by 2014.

 HealthHealth
Eastern Cape
Making A Difference Campaign (MADC), East London
PetroSA is providing the Making a Difference Campaign (MADC) with R1 million to reduce infant mortality and long-term complications while improving staff conditions by expanding, updating and equipping facilities for operative and post-operative pediatric care at the Frere Hospital in the Eastern Cape.
 
Aimed at benefiting patients and their families, this project also benefits medical staff by giving them the opportunity to work in modern facilities while being trained on up-to-date equipment.
 
Limpopo
ChoiCe Comprehensive Healthcare Trust, Tzaneen
PetroSA is funding ChoiCe Trust with R691 785 over two years to engage and collaborate with vulnerable communities and key stakeholders. The aim is to identify people’s wellbeing needs while facilitating health action for change.
 
The initiative specifically concentrates on the health education and empowerment of community members through a community dialogues programme. Incorporating an HIV/AIDS and TB project, theprogramme addresses community healthcare, teenage pregnancy and nutritional concerns in 10 rural villages in Greater Tzaneen, as follows: Zangoma, Khopo, Rita, Burgersdorp, Myakayaka, Sedan, Mulati, Bonn, Gavaza and Hoveni.
 
The funding is utilised for community diagnosis, a process that involves identifying a diagnosis tool that will collect quantitative and qualitative data to build up a comprehensive overview of current circumstances in each village.
 
ChoiCe successfully developed a tool to accurately capture and report imperative findings during the community dialogues. In the month of November 2013, PetroSA is evaluating the programme by determining whether there has been any improvement in the communities’ knowledge and understanding of health issues.
 
 CommunityCommunity Development
Southern Cape
Heart-to-Heart Care Centre, Mossel Bay
Situated in Mossel Bay, Heart-to-Heart responds to the needs of orphans and vulnerable children in the community by providing a holistic service at homes and surrounding schools (food gardens have been set up at two of the main schools where the parents have taken initiative to work, meals served to orphans and the very vulnerable of children registered with the programme at school, as well as pregnancy and abortion awareness, support and advocacy, and caregiving for frail care). The aim is to improve the youngsters’ health and living conditions while enabling families to become self-sustaining.
 
Western Cape
Cape Mental Health, Observatory
This programme aims to provide skills development, job creation and poverty alleviation for young adults with intellectual disabilities. It supports four training workshops linked to the retail sector, where trainees craft items such as ottomans, trays, etc.
 
The programme also aims to provide support and training for the trainees’ parents and care givers. At the same time, it provides training and opportunities for the trainees to contribute towards managing and running the workshops through trainee committees at all four training sites.
 
KwaZulu-Natal
Thanda, Mthwalume
PetroSA’s support for Thanda Project in Mthwalume, KwaZulu-Natal, is a direct response to the national crisis in support for orphans and vulnerable children. Thanda addresses this issue by providing a stable support system for 325 orphans and vulnerable children through daily after-school programmes. Every child in Thanda receives a meal after school. They also receive counseling, life skills, homework help and engaging educational lessons that supplement their traditional schooling.
 
In particular, the Thanda High School Agriculture programme teaches 30 youth how to start and maintain household vegetable gardens. Overall, these children are part of a stable support system that offers guidance, mentoring and skills development.
 
  EnvironmentEnvironment and Sustainable Development.
National
Wildlife and Environmental South Africa (WESSA) –  Eco Schools Programme
PetroSA partnered with Wessa and funding the national Eco-Schools Programme with R1 512 000 per annum for three years.
 
Eco-Schools operate in over 51 countries worldwide through a programme co-ordinated under the Foundation for Environmental Education (FEE) and managed locally by Wildlife and Environmental South Africa (WESSA).
 
This programme involves improving environmental management at schools by establishing an Eco-Schools Committee comprising teachers, learners, their parents, partner organisations and community members. The aim is to undertake a project to improve some aspect of environmental management at the schools.
 
Projects involve food gardens, healthy living, saving electricity, water recycling and conservation, community and heritage. In turn, teachers use these projects to strengthen and improve the quality of their lessons where possible.
 
At the end of every year, each participating school submits a portfolio of evidence, which is then evaluated for evidence of learning and positive environmental change. Depending on the school’s performance, it is either awarded a bronze, silver, gold, green or international Eco-Schools flag according to how long it has participated in the scheme and its contribution towards environmental change. To date, over 684 out of the 1 126 schools on the programme have been awarded flags.
 
In 2012 year the Eco-Schools Programme celebrated its Diamond Decade with 1 120 schools participating in all nine South African provinces. The type of schools involved range from combined, eco-centre, high, home school, special needs and pre-primary schools – among others.
 
Eastern Cape
Sustainable Education and Skills (SEAS) Trust, Hamburg
The Sustainable Education and Skills (SEAS) Trust aims to equip people in coastal communities to become less dependent on depleted marine resources and acquire skills to sustain themselves.
 
PetroSA is providing SEAS Trust with funding of R400 620 over one year to develop educational materials for teachers and learners that align with the national curriculum and are also relevant to the Hamburg community in the Eastern Cape.
 
This programme incorporates the research findings and skill requirements of students at Rhodes University, University of Fort Hare and Nelson Mandela Metropolitan University.
 
KwaZulu-Natal
Food and Trees for Africa (FTFA) – Trees For Homes Greening of KwaZulu-Natal
PetroSA is fundinged the Trees For Homes Greening of KwaZulu-Natal (KZN) with R564 300, 2013/2014financial year..
 
Approximately 5 500 trees were planted in low-cost housing areas of Waterloo, Philani Valley and Hammarsdale. The aim: to raise climate change awareness while reducing carbon dioxide emissions by 2 030 tons over 15 years.
 
This initiative involved young people from the local community acting as community educators (CEs). Their role is to assist with planting and maintaining trees while providing other people in the community with information about the benefits of trees, climate change, and clean and green low-income suburbs. The CEs receive payment for their time at a rate of R16 per tree.
 
The distribution of the trees has been very well received by all three communities. Community members were taken through the eight key steps on how to plant a tree as well as receiving advice on tree care and maintenance. In addition, they were given guidance on preparing liquid manure and formulating an organic spray to eradicate pests.
 
The scheme will improve the aesthetics of these new suburbs and could potentially contribute to economic development and job creation at local level through links with emerging nursery businesses in the area.
 
Past Projects 

 CommunityCommunity Development
Eastern Cape
Integrated Energy Centre, Mbizana
In October 2012, the community of Mbizana in the Eastern Cape had cause for celebration when Ms Dipuo Peters, Minister of Energy, and Ms Nosizwe Nokwe-Nocawe, PetroSA Group CEO, officially handed over the area’s new Integrated Energy Centre (IeC).
 
Built by PetroSA, the Mbizana IeC is an example of our businesses’ commitment to making affordable energy products more easily available to poorer communities. Before it opened, local people had to travel a minimum of 15km to buy electricity, petrol and other energy necessities. Not only does their new facility address the issue of accessible energy products, but it also supports comprehensive rural development while fast-tracking economic participation by all South Africans.
 
The Mbizana IeC comprises a convenience store, fuel forecourt, training centre and a car wash. The project is run in partnership with the Department of Energy and local municipality and aims to:
  •  Facilitate sustainable access to affordable, quality energy products among the poor
  • Educate users on the environmentally sustainable use of energy
  • Promote the healthy and safe use of energy
  • Create jobs and promote community development
  • Support small, medium and micro enterprises (SMMEs) in the energy sector.

PetroSA paid for a two-week course in Johannesburg to train the IeC’s management team along with the IeC’s manager and cashier and the municipality’s local economic development (LED) manager.

The training – which covered the financial and business aspects of managing a service station – will contribute significantly towards ensuring the IeC’s long-term sustainability. Forecourt attendants also underwent onsite training.  The second Intergrated Energy Centre will be built in Qamata and the estimated completion year is 2014.
 
Southern Cape
Clean-up Project, Mossel Bay
The Mossel Bay Clean-up Project was launched four years ago. Its aim was to alleviate poverty by giving unemployed residents the job of helping to improve living conditions among the town’s previously disadvantaged communities.

The project involved creating opportunities for the community's previously disadvantaged individuals (PDIs). This project also aimed to develop PDIs into independent entrepreneurs, creating a healthy environment for their communities by cleaning streets, sidewalks and public open spaces.

PetroSA financial contribution in 2011 saw the project’s entrepreneurial headcount rise to 45. This increase also saw the project extending to areas such as Friemersheim, Ruiterbos, Brandwag and Herbertsdale as well as the main entrances into Mossel Bay: Louis Fourie Road, Impala Road and Morrison Road.

The project has provided an income to more than 260 families in Mossel Bay. Average earnings among those participating in the initiative are over R700 per fortnight. Apart from improving living conditions in various townships through this project, the work teams have voluntarily created gardens and flower beds and planted shrubs and trees to enhance their surroundings.

Some gardens were established in areas previously used as dumping sites. This has had a positive impact on various communities. Although littering and dumping are still major problems, there has been a marked decline.

Public feedback has been positive and healthy relations have been created between local residents and work teams. In many cases, residents provided the teams with plants and materials and also assisted them by supplying water where there are no taps available.
 
HealthHealth
Southern Cape
Mossel Bay provincial hospital, Mossel Bay
The Mossel Bay provincial hospital has recorded a significant influx of patients in recent years due to the area’s ever-growing population. The hospital was always full to capacity and could not always accommodate more patients. With a growing numbers of patients forced to sleep on the floor, the hospital asked PetroSA to help it increase its bed capacity.

PetroSA sponsored the hospital with 23 beds worth R120 000 from Meditek Hemco, which specialises in safe hospital beds. Our sponsorship also enabled the hospital to standardise all its beds to enhance the appearance of its wards and improve patients’ safety and comfort.

Every bed has its own cotside/bedside rails to improve patient safety and prevent medical legal hazards. The beds are height adjustable, simplifying life for nurses and making it easier for patients to get on and off their beds or transfer to the theatre trolley. In addition, the beds’ adjustable features and lockable wheels allow staff to treat bed-ridden patients for the medical conditions they were admitted for.

PetroSA has further committed R15.1 million for the renovation of two clinics D’Almeida and Alma, and construction of a new clinic – Asla Park Clinic in the financial year 2014/2015.    

 EducationEducation
Eastern Cape
Gangatha Primary School, Ntlabane
For years, learners at Gangatha Primary School in Ntlabane near Willowvale in the Eastern Cape attended lessons in mud shelters and corrugated iron shacks. When PetroSA stepped in with financial support worth R13 million, local people responded by building a new school from scratch in just six months.

Significantly, this remarkable feat was achieved with the help of 250 community workers. When building was complete, they were invited to keep the tools they were given to help them secure new jobs elsewhere. In this way, PetroSA ensured every cent spent would reap wider benefits.
 
Designed for around 400 pupils, Gangatha Primary School comprises 10 classrooms, teachers’ cottages and science and computer laboratories – among other facilities.