Aveng donates R3-million to CIDA for skills development

Aveng Limited, one of the top three JSE-listed construction companies in South Africa, was showcasing its projects in preparation for the 2010 Soccer World Cup, today. The company invited several media and industry leaders on a tour of the FNB Stadium construction site and the Orlando Stadium in Gauteng.

The event also demonstrated the Group’s commitment to skills development, especially in the construction industry, with a donation of R3 million towards the overall tertiary education initiatives of the CIDA (Community and Individual Development Association) City Campus.

“Our South African order books reflect the strong underlying market, but the shortage of skilled employees is an ongoing challenge, for Aveng as well as the rest of the industry,” says executive chairman, Angus Band. “The 2010 projects are very important, both for the country and for Aveng. We implemented informal skills development initiatives on these sites. These included a programme for maths and science students from local high schools to give them a taste of how maths and science applies to construction. We also engaged a number of apprentices on these projects.”

Aveng has, since 2003 contributed R5 million (including today’s donation of R3 million) to the CIDA City Campus as part of its Corporate Social Investment (CSI) initiatives. CIDA’s commitment to creating education opportunities for academically deserving but financially disadvantaged students from previously disadvantaged backgrounds reflects Aveng’s CSI philosophy which is also focused on education. The commitment included both mentorship programmes as well as financial support and Aveng has, to date employed 14 CIDA graduates.

“We are honoured to be associated with a forward-looking company like Aveng;” states Dr Taddy Blecher, the group CEO of CIDA City Campus. “This generous donation will be applied to developing skills not only for the construction industry but also for the broader economy.”

CIDA is a living success that will continue to address the skills shortage, including the construction industry in South Africa through ‘The Mastery Academy of Construction’ at CIDA.

Grinaker-LTA, the construction and engineering subsidiary of Aveng has a joint venture with Interbeton, part of the Royal BAM Group from Holland. The joint venture is building the iconic FNB Stadium outside Soweto, where the opening game and the final of the 2010 Soccer World Cup will be played, as well as the Nelson Mandela Stadium in Port Elizabeth. The Orlando Stadium, in Soweto which will be used as a practice venue during the tournament, is nearing completion. “We do not only consider these as big construction projects, but as an opportunity to build a legacy of which all future generations can be fiercely proud of,” concludes Band.