Project aims to un­lock po­ten­tial in metro

Weekend Post (South Africa) - - NEWS - Guy Rogers rogersg@ti­soblack­star.co.za

YOUR city needs you. That was the clar­ion call yes­ter­day from Project Nel­son Man­dela Bay, a good-cit­i­zen ini­tia­tive which is striv­ing to re­lease the metro’s hid­den po­ten­tial.

Speak­ing at a morn­ing meet­ing at the NMB Cham­ber of Busi­ness, the project’s act­ing chief ex­ec­u­tive, pub­lic re­la­tions prac­ti­tioner Michelle Brown, said Project Nel­son Man­dela Bay was a log­i­cal busi­ness in­ter­ven­tion driven by pas­sion­ate cit­i­zens.

“This metro is brim­ming with un­told pos­si­bil­i­ties. It’s South Africa’s best-kept se­cret.

“But we need cit­i­zens to com­mit what­ever they can – their wis­dom, ex­pe­ri­ence, time or money – to help un­lock our true po­ten­tial.”

Brown said the role of Project Nel­son Man­dela Bay was to be a cat­a­lyst for sus­tain­able de­vel­op­ment in the metro.

To this end it has es­tab­lished task teams to pull to­gether di­verse ini­tia­tives, lever­age in­vest­ment and part­ner­ships and drive pos­i­tive change.

Dev­ereaux Joubert of The Code Group out­lined an ini­tia­tive that the Con­nected City task team is driv­ing in con­junc­tion with Imo­bia and the metro, to in­stall WiFi at the Greenacres taxi rank.

If the inia­tive proved suc­cess­ful, the aim would be to roll the same model out around the metro, he said.

Ni­cola Smith of Imo­bia said the ini­tia­tive was aimed at em­pow­er­ing Bay cit­i­zens.

“Once they have ac­cessed the in­ter­net they will be able to get in­stant in­for­ma­tion about ev­ery­thing from bus sched­ules to job va­can­cies and they will be able to com­mu­ni­cate on­line. So this project is a fun­da­men­tal step for­ward, we be­lieve.”

Vicky du Toit, mar­ket­ing man­ager at The Waste Trade Com­pany, ex­plained how the Clean City task team was work­ing to add value to clean-ups with a two-bag sys­tem.

Guided by team mem­bers, waste was now di­vided on site and re­cy­clables were trans­ported after the clean-up to part­ner schools or churches.

“We then teach these part­ners how to earn money from their re­cy­clable waste and thereby take own­er­ship of their en­vi­ron­ment.”

Award-win­ning so­cial en­tre­pre­neur Berenice Rose said the Smart City team had started by es­tab­lish­ing key part­ner­ships to im­prove tu­ition in maths and sci­ence.

Fif­teen Grade 11 pupils, who had been taken on in 2015 by the Go­van Mbeki Math­e­mat­ics De­vel­op­ment Unit at NMU, had now been en­rolled in the In­cu­bat­ing Great Engi­neer­ing Minds (iGEMS) pro­gramme.

iGEMS in­cor­po­rates life and com­puter skills train­ing in a ter­tiary engi­neer­ing qual­i­fi­ca­tion which will guar­an­tee the stu­dents per­ma­nent em­ploy­ment, she said.

GET IN­VOLVED:

Peo­ple want­ing to get in­volved in Project Nel­son Man­dela Bay should e-mail Brown at michelle.brown@axxess.co.za

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