Pfunani Enterprise Development
Posted by Daniel Makhura on 20 October 2017 12:40 PM SAST
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At Cheetah Plains, we know the importance of involving the local community and supporting small businesses that surround the reserve. By having readily accessible services and produce, we are able to obtain the freshest ingredients and very swift service, and this in turn allows the development of the micro enterprise and in turn assists the community.
Since the inception of the Pfunani Enterprise Development Project, we have been involved. The PED project assists SMME’s from the local community and helps them to optimise their offerings, whether it be through marketing, or a more efficient production management system. We have taken advantage of the services and products that are on offer.
Since the companies are located close to the reserve, we receive services quicker than if we would call a company in the larger towns, plus our fresh produce is “just picked”, ensuring top quality, locally sourced ingredients for our guests.
We make use of various suppliers and services through the Pfunani Enterprise Development Project, such as Crocodile contractors who assist us with alien vegetation clearing, and then recycling of the material into firewood for the lodge.
As can be tasted in our fresh produce at the lodge, our vegetables and herbs are sourced straight from the farm in the nearby village of Utah. Our safari vehicle tyres and alignment is handled by a company called “hate to be a failure”. There is a great story of overcoming hardships behind this company, and the owner has just moved to a busier area with the help of the PED.
Billy is a real character, and has a history of guiding within the Sabi Sands. He is always on standby when we need a freelance guide for a few days, and has also set up a successful transfer company called Mzinsingita Transport and tours where he has recruited his entire family to work in the business.
These are just a few of the Small, Medium and Micro enterprises we make use of through the PED project. We are working on assisting various other SMME’s to be ready to supply the lodges within the reserve, and will soon be able to make use of more services and products, such as builders, a fish farm, welders, Seamstresses and Mechanics to name a few.
A cultural village tour is also in the works, but we will elaborate on this as and when it comes to fruition.
For now, I hope that when you visit the lodge you are able to enjoy the fresh produce, and recognise that various products and services are sourced locally, assisting in community upliftment.