City gears for new regional SME Hubs

In line with our administration’s commitment to achieving 5% economic growth by 2021 and reducing unemployment, the department of Economic Development will be launching job seekers and innovation desks, within each of the City’s regional hubs. This leading edge initiative will serve to grow and develop the labour market within the City as well as link job seekers to opportunities both within the public and private sector.

This follows the City’s first ever Entrepreneurship Ecosystem Symposium which sought to find ways we can use to improve the current entrepreneurial ecosystems within Johannesburg, in order to stimulate our local economy and create jobs. The entrepreneurship ecosystem symposium brought together government, private sector, educational institutions, NGO’S and, most importantly, entrepreneurs for this purpose.

With conversations around pioneering the entrepreneurship ecosystem, the city received a number of innovative and practical submissions to the challenges that face entrepreneurs and SMEs operating in Johannesburg.  These submissions are being used to inform our ongoing discussions on the type of support needed by the city’s business community.

As per the department of Economic Development’s 17/18 Financial Year deliverables, we have committed to increased regional economic development and support towards entrepreneurial development. In order to succeed, such an approach can only work through stronger alignment between the department and regional offices as well as collaboration between the city, private sector and small business.

The City’s job seekers’ and innovation desks will be entrepreneurial spaces and meeting points for like-minded individuals to engage, collaborate and find solutions to job creation and economic growth.

The City has also approached two Institutions of Higher Learning in order to give their learners the opportunity to conceptualise an appropriate name and logo for these desks. The learners providing the successful name and logo, will be recognised for their flow of creativity and will for innovation. This approach will also provide platform to emerging graphic designers and young professionals an opportunity to create a unique portfolio.

The new business model will increase hubs to 2 per region, as there is currently one per region and ultimately, the city will have a total of fourteen (14) of such facilities by 2021.

Cllr Leah Knott

MMC of Economic Development

City of Johannesburg

Bitcoin 101

Bitcoin has steadily ascended in the world economy for 9 years. An intricate phenomenon, it is still misunderstood by many in South Africa and the rest of the world alike. It has granted users the ability to use Bitcoin for their day to day transactions rather than the rand.

Bitcoin is a decentralized crypto currency, it is a virtual currency. Bitcoin is owned by no government in any country which makes it useable in all countries that recongise it.

‘’Bitcoin is a growing phenomenon. It is the subject that people speak about all over and where ever they are, we are an education firm that teach people how to buy and sell Bitcoin, how to open a Bitcoin bank account and how to order a Bitcoin debit card, we teach them how to trade and exchange Bitcoin,’’ said Jeff Galbraith, CEO of Bitcoin 101.

“Since the inception of Bitcoin in 2008 its value has increased by over 50 000%, so if R1000 was invested into Bitcoin in 2008 there would be a return of R30million in 2017. In 2010 if R135 000 was invested the return would be about R2.7 billion from Bitcoin today.”

‘’Bitcoin is a registered Forex currency together with the Rand, Dollar, Pound and the Yen, but what most people struggle to understand is the decentralization part which means that Bitcoin is owned by every single person just like time share, so every single person owns a percentage of the Bitcoin network’’ he explained!

Bitcoin 101 prides itself on being a beacon of integrity. They pride themselves in educating people about Bitcoin and ensuring that people have a better understanding of the crypto-currency. Bitcoin101 also cautions people on the possibilities that Bitcoin could fail and as a result it is extremely high-risk investing.

Bitcoin 101 teach investors on how to invest in Bitcoin, the best choices to make when investing in Bitcoin, how to use their Bitcoin currency.

To get in touch with Bitcoin 101, they are on Facebook as bitcoin101sa, email one of their educators on lonwabo@bitcoin101.co.za or visit their Head Office Suit11A, first floor, Bryan Park shopping centre, Corner Grosvenor Road and Cumberland Avenue, Bryanston, Gauteng 2191.

Eskom Foundation

The Eskom Development Foundation’s charity fundraiser, Joy & Jewels, took place on Friday, 17 November at The Polo Room in Inanda, Johannesburg. It was glitz and glamour all-round as the exquisitely dressed guests took some time out to enjoy some delicious food and great entertainment while raising funds for a worthy cause.

On every occasion of this event, the Eskom Foundation selects a national charity as a beneficiary and for this one; the focus was on women abuse, with People Opposing Women Abuse (POWA) as the chosen beneficiary. In recent times, there have been many reports of women being violated not just in South Africa but in other parts of the world.

According to a 2012 Gender Links study, 77% of women in Limpopo, 51% in Gauteng, 45% in the Western Cape and 36% in KwaZulu-Natal had experienced some form of gender based violence. Furthermore, Statistics SA’s 2016 Demographic and Health Survey revealed that on average, one in five South African women older than 18 has experienced physical violence and four in 10 divorced or separated women reported physical violence.

The Joy & Jewels guest list also included women and men from different sectors of society. Also in attendance were senior Eskom officials including Interim Board Chairman Zethembe Khoza. Popular media personality Somizi Mhlongo, who was the master of ceremonies, also added his voice to the condemnation of women abuse.

POWA, which will receive all the funds generated by the event, is dedicated to the realisation of women’s rights and improving their quality of life. In the last financial year, POWA reached and assisted 5659 women through their centres and outreach projects, offering them psychosocial and legal support. POWA’s Executive Director, Nonhlanhla Mokwena said.

An auction was held with awesome items and experiences on offer and all the proceeds were also donated to POWA. With so many reported incidents of abuse and violence against women in our communities, Joy & Jewels presented a welcome and pleasant getaway for women, who few can dispute are responsible for holding families and communities together.

Eskom Development Foundation CEO, Cecil Ramonotsi said the reason for Eskom’s involvement in such initiatives is because the organisation sees itself as more than just an electricity provider.

“We are committed to helping build our country and that extends to protecting and empowering vulnerable members of our society. By helping organisations like POWA, we are taking a stand and contributing to the eradication of injustices against women. Through this event, we wanted to provide women from all walks of life with a chance to take some time out and be celebrated and show them that we are committed to ending this cycle of abuse,” said Ramonotsi.

 

A Family Africa in Diepsloot

Diepsloot children were treated to a Christmas party celebration on the 16th of November, by a foundation that has worked in the area and with its people for over 18 years called A Family Africa. The foundations aim was to educate and empower young people and women in the township.
A Family Africa started working in Diepsloot through them providing adults literacy classes. They also went there because people needed to be educated about HIV/AIDS, because of the number of people that were dying from the disease because they did not understand it and the stigma which was attached to the disease 18 years ago.
‘’ I was invited to a school, to teach children as young as 7 years old and teachers about HIV/AIDS and was reluctant at first, it was a defining moment because the children would be involved in the learning through acting and dance, said Rachel Aird ’’, Chairperson of The Family Africa.
Though that program A Family Africa was able to start similar programs for children in secondary and high school were they taught children how the HIV works in the human body, what they can do to live longer if they had it and how to prevent getting it if they did not have it. This then allowed them to see how else they could help the community
‘’About 75000 students have benefited from the awareness programs that A Family Africa is involved in so far, much of this was led by what the community wanted, because I believe that organisations should look at what the community needs,’’ she explained.
HIV/AIDS as well as tuberculosis affect township at a much larger scale mostly due to the fact of lack of education, in such places it is also found that stigma is more prevalent and people are treated differently if they are HIV positive then when they weren’t. It is unfortunate that after many years of education and the improvement of literacy levels in South Africa, there are still places were being HIV positive is still shameful and continues to be stigmatised.

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