People involved in the refurbishing of Kensington Place hope that their project will inspire other communities to use the skills and services of unemployed people in their area. Photo: Supplied/Joseph Bruintjies

Body corporate hires unemployed local artisans.


Cape Town, South Africa (21 December 2020) – Cape Town residents have taken to social media to praise the body corporate of a well-known housing complex in Kensington for hiring unemployed people from a nearby informal settlement to do their renovations.

The Kensington Place Body Corporate plans to unveil the newly renovated complex on Saturday, 19 December. This is the first time in 20 years that the building has received a facelift. Residents say they decided to use the project as an opportunity to uplift their community and create employment.

The three-week-long upgrades were completed by a team of 13 workers, most of whom were from Die Kamp informal settlement near the complex.

Funding for the project came from savings accumulated over the years, said Joseph Bruintjies, a resident of Kensington Place and the project manager who oversaw the upgrades.

“There are 12 units in the complex and some of our residents are retired, so we have a low living standards measure in terms of income. We only had R350,000 available to do the upgrades and we wanted to make this a viable, low-risk project,” he said.

Had the body corporate decided to hire a contractor, most of the funds would not have gone to the artisans who did the work, said Bruintjies. Instead, he said, they were able to pay each worker R450 a day to promote economic empowerment in the community.

Austin Davids, one of the painters on the project, said he was amazed by how much the team had been able to accomplish just 12 days into the project.

This is despite what Phaldie Daniels called the “challenging condition of the building”. Daniels, the project’s site manager, is an experienced tour guide who has been out of work for seven months, due to the Covid-19 pandemic.

“I appreciate the opportunity to put bread on the table again,” said Daniels.

Once the project has been completed, Bruintjies said, he would like to assist the team to start their own company.

“The lesson for all of us is not to look far … but discover our own people in our own community and empower them economically. We found these exceptional artisans within 600 metres of our complex in an informal settlement,” Bruintjies wrote in a post on the Kensington/Factreton UNITE Facebook page.

Sources: GroundUp
Don’t ever miss the Good Things. Download the Good Things Guy App now on Apple or Google
Have something to add to this story? Please share it in the comments or follow GoodThingsGuy on Facebook & Twitter to keep up to date with good news as it happens or share your good news with us by clicking here
Click the link below to listen to the Good Things Guy Podcast, with Brent Lindeque – South Africa’s very own Good Things Guy. He’s on a mission to change what the world pays attention to, and he truly believes that there’s good news all around us. In the Good Things Guy podcast, you’ll meet these everyday heroes & hear their incredible stories:
Or watch an episode of Good Things TV below, a show created to offer South Africans balance in a world with what feels like constant bad news. We’re here to remind you that there are still so many good things happening in South Africa & we’ll hopefully leave you feeling a little more proudly South African.

Facebook Comments

About the Author

Tyler Leigh Vivier is a writer for Good Things Guy.

Her passion is to spread good news across South Africa with a big focus on environmental issues, animal welfare and social upliftment. Outside of Good Things Guy, she is an avid reader and lover of tea.

Leave a Reply

Your email address will not be published. Required fields are marked *