Diamscan SA became a member of BASA (Business and Arts South Africa) some months ago. BASA is a not-for profit company whose primary aim is to promote mutually beneficial and sustainable business-arts partnership that will benefit society as a whole.
It was an easy decision as our work with Imbali Visual Arts and Literacy Programme is at the core of Diamscan SA CSR activities and we have created a durable and sustainable relationship with the organisation.
It was due to this project that we were encouraged by BASA to send an application to participate in the 13th BASA awards. These yearly awards recognize the support that private companies give to the arts sector and arts organisations in South Africa and are supported by Anglo American. We entered our candidacy in the First Time Sponsor Award section.
We are exceptionally proud to say that the partnership Diamscan SA-Imbali was selected as one of the finalists to opt for the award in this particular category. Even though we did not win the award, being in the final of this prestigious contest is a great recognition for Diamscan SA as a first time participant in the CSR arts and crafts sector.
The awards consisted in 13 different categories and the response from the corporate sector was immense making the selection of the finalists a challenging task for the judges. Among the selected companies there were some of South Africa’s largest institutions such as Standard Bank, Old Mutual Life Assurance Company, Total South Africa, ABSA Bank and others.
Diamscan SA members and Imbali staff gathered during the award ceremony and enjoyed an evening full of excitement, creativity and imaginative performances.
Yda Walt and the Imbali staff have been working hard to set up a business incubator project. New graduates from Imbali will have the opportunity to join the new micro-factory set up at Imbali premises at the Bus Factory in Newton area.
These young graduates will put the skills obtained during their three years studies into practice. They will be working as professional crafters and will create their own range of products to produce and sell at the Imbali shop.
This is a new and exciting project that will allow participants to develop their own ideas and creations. They will count on the support of Imbali but they will be mainly working as if they were independent crafters.
This is a mutually beneficial project for both parties. It aims to be a bridge between their studies and the professional world and at the same time, the participants will give new and original ideas to Imbali which will surely raise the profile and quality of their shop at the Museum Africa.
On the 28th of November 2009, Imbali held its annual graduation event. Certificates where handed over to all the students from the different years. A special mention was given to those finishing the three year cycle.
Diamscan SA was also invited to the event as special guest. Nuria Ballesteros, Diamscan SA CSI Director addressed the students and recognized the efforts and improvements made during the year. Later on she handed over the certificates to the learners.
Diamscan SA is proud to have had the opportunity to participate in this important event for Imbali and all the students.
Support to unemployed young adults
Diamscan is currently supporting Imbali Visual Arts. Imbali is a South African craft and design training centre. They are active in the areas of Kagiso and inner Johannesburg. They teach unemployed young adults crafting skills focusing in ceramics, textile design, weaving and silk screening. Their aim is to provide the necessary skills to enable economic independence.
Our work focuses in supporting the development of the students’ curriculum in order to increase their chances of obtaining a job or setting up a successful business after their studies.
For this reason, we are currently funding a three module specialization course on textile printing and an all year business skills development class.
Yda Walt is a South African artist and designer who focus on textile work. She has created a three module specialization course for Imbali’s last year students. With her collaboration, we expect to reinforce the students CVs. The course helps students to develop real professional expertise in the areas of design, production and finishing of a product.
Doornkop is an informal settlement close to Dobsonville, northern Soweto. Diamscan is working together with a community group of around 32 families in order to secure regular access to food through the development of food gardens. We have provided training on how to grow their own vegetables using environmentally friendly and low cost methods.
In addition, we also collaborate with Dimpho Hani nursery, a day care centre situation also in Thulani. The centre cares for and feeds around 120 children from the most disadvantaged backgrounds.
In order to give some economic leverage Diamscan will support the expansion of the bakery at the nursery. The provision of automated machinery and expansion of the premises will result in the increase in business and income for the nursery.