Please provide a brief summary of the initiative including the problems/challenges it addressed and the solutions that the initiative introduced (300 words maximum)
The Imperial and Ukhamba Community Development Trust (IUCDT) was established in 2003 by Imperial Holdings (See Annexure A). It was established to assist impoverished communities to improve the standard of education at schools. This is achieved by providing the adopted schools with textbooks, reading material, teaching aids, teacher training workshops, sports equipment and excursions.The Gauteng Department of Education (GDE) signed a Memorandum of Agreement with Imperial and Ukhamba Community Development Trust. (See Annexure B)The project commenced in 2004 with the adoption of two schools Inkululeko Yesizwe and Igugulethu Primary Schools in Vlakfontein. Vlakfontein is an informal settlement in the south of Johannesburg. In 2007 a further two schools were adopted, Finetown Primary situated in Grasmere and Tshepana Primary situated in Orange Farm. The focus of The Trust was in line with the strategic objectives of the GDE’s Literacy and language Strategy referred to as GPLMS Programme (Gauteng Primary Language/Literacy and Numeracy/Mathematics Strategy) See Annexure C which was to improve numeracy and literacy skills at all levels, with emphasis on the foundation phase. The Trustees bought into the belief founded on the GPLMS that sound literacy and numeracy skills from an early age will have a positive impact on future matric results.The Department of Basic Education released the National Guidelines for School Library and Information Services in March 2012. In line with these guidelines the Gauteng Department of Education crafted the Strategy to Provide Access to Library and Information Services in Gauteng Schools (See Annexure D). Imperial and Ukhamba Trust has since chosen to invest heavily in the establishment of high quality school libraries following the National and Provincial Guidelines for the establishment of libraries. South Africa remains plagued by a very high rate of illiteracy at all levels of the system.
a. What are the overall objectives of the initiative?
Please describe the overall objectives of the initiative (200 words maximum)
-To ensure that Gauteng has effective schools and learning institutions
- To enable young people to make the transition from school to further education and/or
work that provides further education opportunities
- To strengthen GDE’s partnerships with all stakeholders, resulting in education becoming a
The project assists selected schools in providing learners with a well-balanced education that empowers them to reach their potential while nurturing their self-confidence.
It is also primarily involved in the establishment of school libraries as well as classroom intervention, curriculum development, management training, extracurricular events, co-curricular activities, volunteer programmes and technical training projects.
b. How does the initiative fit within the selected category?
Please describe how the initiative is linked to the criteria of the category (200 words maximum)
The project is a Public-private partnerships venture and is making an exceptional contribution to improving the livelihood of communities and nation-building. It is contributing to the development, transformation and general improvement in living standards.
The initiative should improve people’s lives, notably by enhancing the contribution of public services to the implementation of the 2030 Agenda for Sustainable Development and the realization of the SDGs
a. Please explain how the initiative improves the delivery of public services (200 words maximum)
In South Africa, the literacy levels, including reading levels of school children is extremely low.The project focused on capacity building and resource building of
the schools including learners.
The initiative must impact positively a group or groups of the population (i.e. children, women, elderly, people with disability, etc) and address a significant issue of public service delivery within the context of a given country or region.
a. Please explain how the initiative has addressed a significant issue related to the delivery of public services (200 words maximum)
By 2015 there were approximately 25 741 registered schools in South Africa serving more than twelve and a half million learners. Of this number of schools, roughly 10% have libraries due to the fact that after 1994 teacher librarian posts were eradicated and many libraries were closed. These library and resource centres take the focal point in the corporate life of each of the schools due largely to the various programmes stemming from them and the commitment of the young, previously jobless township youth, now in the employ of the Trust. In the past five years, the staff of the Imperial and Ukhamba Community Development Trust employed as library assistants have grown to over 50.
b. Please explain how the initiative has impacted positively a group or groups of the population within the context of your country or region (200 words maximum)
Librarians, formerly unemployed township youth, are trained in providing reading classes for learners from grade one to grade seven in primary schools, and reading and comprehension support for learners in grade eight and nine. The Trust employs 24 librarians across its projects in South Africa. The total staff of the organisation is 70, the majority of whom were unemployed young people from the townships where the libraries are located. Through the library project, a culture of reading and writing and the acquisition of information literacy skills to access, process and use information resources in various formats, including digital will empower learners and the community who participate in this project to be ready for the job market when the opportunity arises. The project also aspires to fulfil its social mission to build South Africa’s human, intellectual and social capital, leading to greater economic opportunities.
The initiative must present an innovative idea, a distinctively new approach, or a unique policy or approach implemented in order to realize the SDGs in the context of a given country or region.
a. Please explain in which way the initiative is innovative in the context of your country or region (200 words maximum)
Imperial and Ukhamba Community Development Trust (IUCDT) takes a responsible approach and focus their investments on projects that create a meaningful difference to communities and provide multi-faceted benefits. These projects deepen their relationship with society and have the ability to become self-sustaining and create significant social value over time. While they have directly supported education development to the value of R62 million to date, they have also employed 65 people, some as librarians and support staff. They also supported more than 10 small and medium enterprises. The distinctive aspect of the library project is that they utilise their own teachers (2) that they employ to build on the foundation of the reading programme. They have also employed a professional curriculum specialist (former employee of the Gauteng Department of Education) who has vast experience in curriculum and management matters. The libraries are open daily until 4 o’clock, as well as on three Saturdays of every month. The project sponsors book clubs, book quizzes and spelling competitions. It has also developed a board game that assists learners to read an atlas. The broader spin-offs of the project are the jobs it creates.
b. Please describe if the innovation is original or if it is an adaptation from other contexts (If it is known)? (200 words maximum)
The Project is the original initiative of the partnership between the Gauteng Department of Education (GDE) and Imperial and Ukhamba Community Development Trust.
c. What resources (i.e. financial, human , material or other resources, etc) were used to implement the initiative? (200 words maximum)
The Project has directly supported education development to the value of R62 million to date so far.
The initiative should be adaptable to other contexts (e.g. other cities, countries or regions). There may already be evidence that it has inspired similar innovations in other public-sector institutions within a given country, region or at the global level.
a. Has the initiative been transferred to other contexts?
The initiative should be able to be sustained over a significant period of time.
a. Please describe whether and how the initiative is sustainable (covering the social, economic and environmental aspects) (300 words maximum)
The Trust employees have written and directed their own in-house plays and musicals aimed at eliminating litter and conserving and protecting the environment.
The Trust adhere’s to Imperial’s formal environmental sustainability policy. Through monthly monitoring and reporting by site of relevant data - including water and electricity usage, combustible materials and greenhouse gas emissions – Imperial constantly strive to reduce the environmental impact of their operations and to minimize their carbon footprint.The Imperial and Ukhamba Community Development Trust (IUCDT) also subscribes to the global G4 Sustainability Reporting initiative, through which we follow G4 reporting guidelines to monitor our most critical sustainability impacts, set goals and measure our performance. It covers our participation in stakeholder engagement, as well as economic indicators, energy-saving initiatives, biodiversity and emissions, water and effluent.The Imperial and Ukhamba Community Development Trust (IUCDT) through its Black Empowerment Programme, previously disadvantaged individuals acquired 10,1% (valued at R2,8-billion) of Imperial. Ukhamba generates wealth for its 15 000 members and inspires a culture of investment among Imperial’s employees.In March 2016, each previously disadvantaged Imperial employee received units in the Ukhamba Trust, a 47,1% shareholder in Ukhamba.The Imperial Ukhamba Community Trust and Imperial Holdings own the balance of Ukhamba, with 6% and 46,9% shareholdings respectively. Imperial’s previously disadvantaged employees can voluntarily acquire further units in Ukhamba through the Ukhamba Trust.
b. Please describe whether and how the initiative is sustainable in terms of durability in time (300 words maximum)
The Imperial and Ukhamba Community Trust through their fraternal partners have secured Imperial Logistics and Europcar to fund the project’s extra-curricular activities delivered through Saturday sports and holiday programmes. These programmes are well attended, provide children with a meal, serve to get them off the streets and provide employees from both divisions with the opportunity to interact with the children. Imperial Logistics also invests in upgrading one Grade R play area annually as part of its Mandela Day initiative. Both Imperial Logistics and Europcar host Christmas celebrations for preschool learners, and Europcar sponsors awards ceremonies that recognise top-performing learners and sports achievers
The initiative should have gone through a formal evaluation, showing some evidence of impact on improving people’s lives.
a. Has the initiative been formally evaluated?
The initiative must demonstrate that it has engaged various actors such as from other institutions, civil society, or the private sector, when possible.
a. The 2030 Development Agenda puts emphasis on collaboration, engagement, coordination, partnerships, and inclusion. Please describe what stakeholders were engaged in designing, implementing and evaluating the initiative. Please also highlight their roles and contributions (300 words maximum)
The Gauteng Department of Education, Hyundai South Africa, Europcar.Europcar as a founding member of the Imperial Group has been a patron of the Nelson Mandela Children’s Fund since its inception in 1995, donating a percentage of every inbound international rental to the Fund. To date, more than R1,5 million has been donated to the Nelson Mandela Children’s fund. Europcar also provided mobility support for Reach for a Dream, Columba Leadership, a provider of values-based leadership programmes to empower young people from difficult backgrounds, and GOLD Peer Education, a programme supporting the fight against HIV/AIDS, high-risk behaviours, poverty and abuse among the youth. In keeping with their (Ukhamba Community Development Trust) commitment to help transform and uplift the communities Ukhamba Community Development Trust together with the Gauteng Department of Education (GDE) identified and targeted a most deserving institution. Both Imperial Ukhamba Community Development Trust and the GDE believe strongly in promoting projects that raise social awareness in meaningful ways, providing increased opportunities for the less advantaged and investing substantially in the upliftment of this and other communities.Funded by Imperial Logistics, the Trust in 2016 undertook to modernise, upgrade and decorate the Grade R classrooms at the MC Kharbai School in Lenasia. Imperial and the School Staff painted the classrooms, adding rich splashes of colour, brightened the walls with inspiring charts, built new shelves for stock and totally renovated the storeroom. Imperial also provided a new desk and chair for the teachers and soft carpeting for the young learners. Deaf children learn best in multisensory, highly visual and perceptual spaces. So, just outside the Grade R class the teams laid hard-wearing synthetic turf and evergreen lawn to give the children year-round colour and stimulation. As a further addition, Imperial acquired and installed a brand new Wendy house to be use
a. Please describe the key lessons learned, and any view you have on how to further improve the initiative (200 words maximum)
Together with the Gauteng Department of Education the Imperial and Ukhamba Community Development Trust focused much of its efforts on its library programme. All beneficiary schools have libraries which were either developed or equipped by the Trust, but many of these libraries remained closed due to lack of staff availability. During the year under review it sourced librarians from among unemployed family members of Imperial employees. These individuals have been trained up as librarians and are permanently located at the schools, ensuring learners and educators have access to the books and facilities offered by the libraries. Librarians are encouraged to study further. In addition to staffing the libraries, librarians play an integral role in helping to improve the reading ability of children in the foundation grades. They run intense reading programmes with grade 1 to 4 learners during two 30-minute sessions a week. They make use of specially purchased flashcards and worksheets during these lessons. Older children are involved in a similar spelling programme. The programme is already seeing the benefits of this new intervention. Library use has increased dramatically among both learners and educators who use the facilities before and after school and during school holidays.