Community upliftment

Key features

  • R38,661,225RA1 spent on approved SLP projects in 2013.
  • 260 students participated in our school support programmes.
  • 72 participated in our tertiary and technical preparedness programmes.
  • 154 community members equipped with portable skills training.


In South Africa, and in the Greater Lonmin Community (GLC2) in particular, we contribute to our communities to address the historical inequalities of economic opportunity, education and infrastructure, and to address current challenges of healthcare provision, poverty, unemployment and lack of schooling. While there is some debate about the role that industry should play in what is traditionally considered the remit of the state, we recognise that the lack of social delivery will continue to have an effect on our communities and on our relationship with them.

Map of the Greater Lonmin Community at our Marikana operations

Greater Lonmin Community at our Marikana operations [map]

Community engagement is key to understanding what our communities expect from us, and in turn, managing those expectations. The GLC faces a specific set of challenges, with high unemployment levels and poverty as well as low literacy levels. We have sought to address these specific issues through our Social and Labour Plans (SLPs), which form the basis for our community investment programme.

In the coming year we will review our community relationships in two ways.

  • Firstly, we are updating our SLPs for the next five years, and this gives us an opportunity to evaluate past successes and failures.
  • We are also developing the Community Value Proposition (CVP), which involves extensive engagement with our communities, and will use this as a basis to ensure we are fulfilling the needs of those around us in the best possible way.

New Social and Labour Plans

The original Western Platinum Limited (WPL) and Eastern Platinum Limited (EPL) SLPs that were approved by the DMR expired in December 2012. These plans entailed a number of key initiatives that we committed to deliver as part of our social licence to operate. We are required to submit new five year SLPs and arrangements are at an advanced stage to finalise these documents for implementation in 2014.

  1. 1 This only refers to those community projects that are part of our SLP commitments for WPL & EPL. It excludes projects undertaken in Limpopo and the Pandora Joint Venture.
  2. 2 GLC refers to the communities within a 15 kilometre radius of our operations.
Value of SLP community projects

Over the last five years, we have spent R173 million on WPL and EPL SLP projects1, with R38,661,225RA spent in 2013. Payments for community projects and donations amounted to one cent for every US dollar earned.

  1. 1 This only refers to those community projects that are part of our SLP commitments for WPL & EPL. It excludes projects undertaken in Limpopo and the Pandora Joint Venture.

This year we have received a number of requests from different stakeholders to disclose our socio-economic development expenditure more comprehensively than before. Focusing specifically on the financial investment in communities, this is as follows:

Summary of community expenditure
Spend on community education programme (in schools) R6.9 million
Spend on skills development (ABET, portable skills training, technical skills, university preparedness and learnership training for communities) R9.1 million
Spend on sports, arts and culture R1.3 million
Spend on community health programmes R5.1 million
Spend on local economic development1 R32.0 million
Donations R2.8 million
Supplier development R3.9 million
Other infrastructure projects (such as waste management) R10.5 million
Overheads R2.1 million
Total R73.7 million or US$ 7.9 million2
  1. 1 This includes salaries and wages.
  2. 2 This includes programmes over and above SLP projects for WPL and EPL.

We have also contributed R6.2 million in community bursaries.

The absolute level of expenditure is not always a reflection of our commitment to development as, sometimes, a small investment can have a large impact, for example our community activities undertaken on Mandela Day. For more details, see the case study: Mandela Day: Taking action, inspiring change.

We engage with the GLC before new projects are introduced, hold monthly meetings with ward councillors and use these formal channels to deal with community queries and complaints. Within Lonmin, responsibility for our commitments to the GLC lies with the Executive Vice President: Communications and Public Affairs.

Our Community Education Programme takes a holistic approach to education, tackling the problem through six pillars, namely:

We also invest time in maintaining a sound relationship with the Department of Education, to ensure that we can work together to improve local education standards and infrastructure. While the demand for assistance in the GLC is greater than what we as a single company can provide, we remain committed to this cause and will increase support structures as and when we are able.

Infrastructure of local schools

Projects this year included upgrading electricity in Mogale High School, improving ablution facilities at Sonop Primary School, upgrading electricity facilities at Kgwanyape, and upgrading administration blocks at four other schools situated in the GLC.

We continued with the maintenance of our computer class rooms. 638 computers were maintained in 21 schools and four administration blocks’ computers were virtualised.

We also began construction on new sports amenities (soccer, netball and volleyball) for a high school in Wonderkop, as a reward for the outstanding results pupils achieved in the 2012 Grade 12 exams. This project was completed by a local, black-owned construction company, Etirele, at a cost of R1.6 million and is expected to be handed over to the Department of Basic Education by the end of 2013. We have also begun hosting a soccer and netball tournament. 26 schools participated in the tournament with about 1,410 learners joining in the games.

Learner support

Our learner support is provided on three platforms.

  • Ithutheng Saturday School is our flagship curriculum support programme for top learners in local schools.
  • Examination preparedness and support (EPS) provides extra classes for all Grade 12 students who do not participate in Ithutheng. This takes place on Saturday and during the holidays, and helps students work through the curriculum and prepare for exams.
  • Finally we offer a holiday programme for promising Grade 4 to Grade 7 learners. This is a supplementary primary support programme that builds on what the students have learnt at school.

All of our learner-support programmes offer transport and two meals, to encourage attendance. The Ithutheng and EPS programme saw combined participation by 260 students during 2013.

Tertiary education preparedness

We also offer a tertiary preparedness programme for top learners to help smoothen their transition from school to tertiary education. This programme is split into a university stream and a technical stream, which simulate the tertiary institutions, and allows students to take one or two initial courses.

The students in the university stream then qualify for the bursary pipeline, while the students in the technical stream qualify for the learnership pipeline. In 2013 the university preparedness programme hosted 72 students.

Educator support

Our educator-support system is divided between on-site and off-site teacher training. A specific focus area during the last year was on life orientation teachers (42), who were trained to administer aptitude testing, using various relevant books and other tools. About 25 contact sessions were held with the teachers. This was supported by training on how to provide career guidance.

We also provided support to nine crèche teachers on early childhood development (level 4) and school readiness training and trained a further 50 educators in the South African Curriculum Assessment Policy Statements (CAPS).

Finally, two educators were also awarded with community study assistance to further their studies.

Parent support

By involving them in their children's education, parents are encouraged to take an active role in assisting both their children and the school to grow.

In 2013 the grapevine SMS system, which helps to maintain communication between parents and schools, continued and grew. Training was also provided during the year for parents sitting on the governing bodies of schools, to help them improve the running of those schools.

Community health

For more on our community healthcare commitments and initiatives, see the community health section in the Health and Wellbeing section of this report.

Through the Community Value Proposition (CVP) and together with communities, we have identified that infrastructure needs such as bulk water infrastructure and waste removal are critical priorities. We will consider these needs as part of our updated SLP, for the next five years.

Community infrastructure projects (local economic development)
Project Benefits
Ipopeng Community Centre Construction of community service centre in Modderspruit that accommodates a food centre, an arts and crafts centre, government services and office space for three local SMEs.
Tedcor waste project 26,500 households and 5,400 informal houses across the GLC serviced by our waste removal service, which we run in partnership with Tedcor.

40 long-term employment opportunities created and four SMEs developed as a result.

Rebuilding of four houses Four houses that had been damaged in a fire were rebuilt, creating 12 short-term jobs created, and making use of locally sourced material. The new houses were installed with solar heating and lighting.
Started work on building Mnxekasi JSS school in the Eastern Cape The school will host 259 learners and consist of seven standard classrooms, two Grade R classrooms, a nutrition centre, a media centre and a science laboratory. Due for completion in November 2013.
Brick-making facility in Bapong Approaching self-sustainability, making approximately 210,000 bricks employing 42 people from the local area. While we still provide some assistance, we expect this project to be independent in one or two years.
Energy savings initiatives at Grace Care Centre See Case study: Energising the Grace Care Centre.
Enterprise development projects
Project Benefits
Shanduka Black Umbrellas small business incubator Developing the pool of locally-based entrepreneurs and for the creation of sustainable businesses within the region and provides support to existing suppliers. Please see Case study: Black umbrellas nurture small businesses.
Training in bookkeeping and financial management Developing business skills for locally-based entrepreneurs
Loan to youth-owned enterprise, Badumela Projects from Bapong, for 49% balance in Concentrate Carriers, a local company that received a R45 million transportation contract with us in 2008 Encouraging GLC supplier participation in our supply chain, creating the opportunity for Badumela to manage the project.
Percentage of operations with implemented local community engagement, impact assessments, and development programmes.
Development and infrastructure investments and services provided primarily for public benefit through commercial, in kind, or pro bono engagement.
Understanding and describing significant economic impacts, including the extent of impacts.