One of the foremost objectives of a leader is to set a good example, which is why USB Executive Development (USB-ED) is assisting in the growth of a new generation of leaders who will use their business influence to make a positive social, environmental and economic impact on the world.
This is precisely why we have established a relationship with Learn to Earn (LtE),
a skills development organisation that works with unemployed people from socially and economically disadvantaged backgrounds. LtE
’s vision is to see unemployment and other legacies of injustice eradicated in South Africa through a programme that empowers the community to provide for themselves and their respective families. LtE
facilitates business opportunities, job creation and access to economic ponds – which is where USB-ED stepped in.
During 2010, we saw that there was a need to move away from synthetic study-material bags so as to become a more environmentally friendly company and through word of mouth found LtE. This is now the second year that LtE is responsible for manufacturing our study-material bags. The new bags are made from 100% cotton with a hessian strap and these natural fibres which make up the product have a minimal environmental impact.
Gail Vertue, USB-ED’s logistics and administration manager, had the privilege of visiting LtE
’s premises and was duly excited and encouraged to see how this enterprise “was also making a difference to people's lives”. For 2012 alone, USB-ED commissioned some 5 000 sustainable bags, which all participants in its programmes will receive. This social responsibility venture intends to “[increase] job creation, skills development and poverty alleviation,” says Gail, and indeed, the order for 2012 will provide jobs for approximately 20 households until the end of April.
LtE is a truly remarkable initiative, which we are proud to support. Since its inception in 1989 over 9 000 unemployed people from previously disadvantaged communities in the Western Cape have been trained in market-relevant skills. It recognises that people need to be given access to resources and support in order to become self-sustaining, and in a sense, leaders in their own right.
This is a natural fit for USB-ED, as the concept of training, equipping and enhancing leadership skills is a key part of our vision. If you would like to find out more about USB-ED’s work with LtE
, or LtE
’s objectives, please view this article or visit the Learn to Earn website