Setting up of Upington Office
Recently, a few members of the team travelled 800Km to Upington, a quiet bustling town located in Namaqualand on the edge of the “Green Kalahari”.We arrived after a grueling 800km drive, weaving through semi-arid landscape, cascading through valleys backed by mountains in the distance.
The reason for this journey; opportunity- a chance to impact the Khai-Ma community through business training, skills development and ultimately funding.
On arrival, we are greeted by the heat! The town boasts one of the hottest climates in the region. Despite the heat, there is an easy-going ambience to the town and its people. There is an energy around here; an aura of productivity. “Even the Chinese are here!” exclaims one of our colleagues.
Located on the banks of the Orange River, Upington is best known for producing high quality grapes and raisins mainly for the export market. The town is also a tourist attraction making it a hub of activity.
However beneath the layers lies an all too familiar situation; poverty. Locals are unable to tap into the pool of opportunities present. They lack the necessary skills or knowledge required to take advantage of the town’s economic potential.
Thankfully, the municipal is actively trying to address this and has brought in private sector players as well as other organizations such as Siza, to bring change. We hope to empower the locals and equip them with the necessary arsenal to not only earn a living, but create jobs for others and work towards improving their overall standards of living.