Glencore Ferroalloys’ Wonderkop Smelter, in partnership with Merafe Resources, recently announced the successful completion of the construction of a state-of-the-art multi-purpose community centre in Thekwane, Rustenburg. The facility will house various governmental facilities, including SASSA (South African Social Security Agency), Home Affairs, and SAPS (South African Police Service) amongst others.
Aimed at providing essential services to community members, the multi-purpose community centre is a significant component of Ferroalloys’ mining and smelting Social and Labour Plan (SLP) projects.
With an emphasis on inclusivity and engagement, Wonderkop Smelter actively sought the input and cooperation of local community leadership, the Royal Bafokeng Administration (RBA) and the Rustenburg Local Municipality to roll out the project. Throughout the project’s development, various engagement strategies were employed to incorporate the needs and preferences of the community. This collaborative approach culminated in the approval of a concept design that perfectly aligns with the accommodation requirements of the area.
The multi-purpose community centre is a versatile and fully equipped facility designed to cater to diverse critical needs, and by bringing these essential services closer to the communities, it will result in easier access to critical resources and support.
The community centre will also serve as a hub for a wide array of events, promoting recreational and social activities that foster community bonding. The centre boasts a multi-purpose sports court to host sports events such as netball, basketball, softball, and soccer. Additionally, the facility’s indoor hall, boardroom and courtyard provide ample space for gatherings, social services, and other community-related functions.
The total investment for the community centre amounts to R20-million, a substantial testament to the Glencore-Merafe Resources Pooling and Sharing Ventre’s dedication to uplifting the community and showcasing its unwavering commitment to fostering sustainable development.
“This infrastructure investment represents a commitment to progress. It symbolises our resolve to embrace change, adapting to the evolving needs of our society, and prepare our beneficiaries for a bright future. This infrastructure investment will create jobs, both directly and indirectly, giving a boost to the economy and injecting vitality into the fabric of the community. This will stimulate economic growth, attracting new emerging business enterprises, fostering innovation and creativity, especially at the dawn of the 4th Industrial revolution, a just energy transition, robotics and coding. It not only showcases our determination, but also our collective vision for a better tomorrow,” said Glencore Ferroalloys CEO, Japie Fullard.
To mark its successful completion, the smelter handed over the facility to the Royal Bafokeng Administration (RBA), which was attended by Kgosana Nthebe Ntsimane – Head Infrastructure and Development, Executive Mayor Cllr Sheila Mabale-Huma, Merafe Resources’ CEO Zanele Matlala, as well as the Glencore Ferroalloys management.
The RBA will take on the responsibility of maintaining and facilitating the facility’s operations, ensuring its sustainable use and impact on the local community.
Kgosana Nthebe Ntsimane – Head of Infrastructure and Development (RBA), in his address mentioned that this project is what they call a high impact project. “Projects such as these play a significant role in fostering growth in communities, high impact projects have a greater approach to addressing community needs simultaneously. To ensure the success of such projects, we require great collaboration from all stakeholders involved. Thank you once again to Glencore, and we look forward to a greater strategic relationship together,” he said.
The contractor hired for the project was Sue Phalane Trading and Projects (PTY), a 100% youth female-owned company under the leadership of Portia Phalane. The appointment of the business represents the empowerment of women in the construction industry. This tender recognises the talent and capabilities of female entrepreneurs and demonstrates Glencore’s commitment to uplifting the surrounding community.
Glencore remains steadfast in its commitment to the communities it serves, and this centre stands as a shining example of its dedication to making a meaningful difference in the progress of its communities.