Earlier this year, a community development programme that was implemented in partnership with Golden Lanes and Isiqalo Opportunity Centre set in motion a journey of transformation for the residents of Region C, which focused on agricultural plant production and new venture creation.
It took the form of a short skills course designed to equip participants with the knowledge and tools to create thriving agricultural ventures. After months of dedication and hard work, the beneficiaries of the programme completed their practical agricultural training.
Their commitment extended beyond acquiring new skills. In a remarkable achievement, 103 out of 113 programme graduates were certified as competent by the Services SETA and Agri SETA during a graduation ceremony at the Roodepoort Civic Centre this week.
The programme’s impact extended beyond skills acquisition. It aimed to sow the seeds of economic growth within Region C. As part of their exit strategy, Golden Lanes, in partnership with the City of Johannesburg’s Economic and Social Development Departments, secured six agricultural sites around Roodepoort.
Here, programme beneficiaries continued their journey by planting vegetables, not just for sustenance but for sustainable livelihoods. This step will pave the way for formalised cooperatives, fostering economic growth within the community, cultivating cooperative ventures that would endure beyond the initial training.
The main objective of the City is to create an enabling environment for businesses to strive. City need to partner with other stakeholders in and around the City for such community programmes.
Simphiwe Malimela, Deputy Director for Enterprise Development encouraged entrepreneurs to come to the City’s Opportunity Centre with their business concepts.
“The City of Joburg is here to handhold you throughout your entrepreneurial journey so that you become sustainable and can run your business successfully. The main objective of the City is to create an enabling environment for you to thrive. There is a market in agriculture as everyone needs food. You are not only doing it for your family but for community at large,” said Malimela.