The importance of IT skills for schoolchildren is underscored by the fact that, of the 6.2 million unemployed people in South Africa at present, 52% are in the 15- to 24-year age group. Keeping this in mind, Prowalco Tatsuno has made a major donation of computer equipment to Umusa Community Projects, operating as Endleleni, based in Margate in KwaZulu-Natal.
The donation forms part of Prowalco Tatsuno’s corporate social responsibility initiatives, with the company having a Level 1 B-BBEE rating. Established in 1960, the company has the lion’s share of both the fuel-pump and dispenser supply and maintenance market in Sub-Saharan Africa. It also specialises in facility maintenance, and has longstanding contracts with leading players.
It forms part of the larger Bud Group, with Tatsuno acquiring a 3% stake in Prowalco in January 2018. Tatsuno is a Japanese manufacturer of fuel dispensers and other solutions for retail commercial fuelling customers globally.
Endleleni Resource Development Manager Elize Coetzee explains that Prowalco Tatsuno CEO Annali May approached her personally about becoming involved with its two computer laboratories established to serve 900 rural children in the rural Nositha and Umzumkhule communities in KwaZulu-Natal.
“It is important that learners in the rural areas are connected to the world, to ensure they are ready to enter the job market successfully and become economically active,” May comments. Prowalco Tatsuno has made a major donation of 35 computers to the two computer laboratories.
Endleleni focuses on teaching basic computer skills in order to ‘connect’ learners to the real world. “There children otherwise do not have access to computers or the Internet. By the time they reach matric or leave school, they are still on the back foot. This is a very successful initiative, so we are really excited at Prowalco Tatsuno’s commitment and involvement,” Coetzee highlights.
The company’s generous donation has allowed Umusa to replace outdated computer equipment at its laboratories, with 15 computers in each, with the balance of computers being kept in stock in case of malfunction. This will allow Endleleni to focus on future requirements, such as installing printers, and the ultimate establishment of a video content creation laboratory to assist school leavers.
“It is vitally important for major corporates such as Prowalco Tatsuno to become involved in these initiatives, as they have a lot of experience and expertise to impart. The learners themselves are extremely excited at the upgrade, as they stand to gain much-needed interaction with an ever-changing digital world, especially with the latest trends such as Industry 4.0 and the internet impacting on the youth’s ultimate career choices and opportunities,” Coetzee concludes.