Mayoral Newsletter for 15 July 2020
While the core function of municipalities is to provide essential services such as water, treatment of wastewater, refuse removal, electricity, streets and stormwater, efforts are also undertaken within communities to assist on many other fronts.
Within many of our communities there is a need to encourage and foster the development of small businesses, ranging from house and neighbourhood grocery shops to hairdressers, cellphone shops and internet cafes, repair shops and other business facilities. I have been discussing this need with individuals who aspire to setting up small businesses.
Recently the Municipality has commenced with the placing of vendor stalls in certain areas to assist informal traders with the marketing of their wares. The development of small business hubs is also being investigated in terms of available sites and after assessing the needs in communities. Initial pilot sites are likely to be erected possibly using containers to test the market. Ultimately the development of small business centres housing a number of shops and services is to encouraged.
It will also be important to assist emerging entrepreneurs to acquire the training and skills to run these businesses successfully. Training, understanding and support will need to be facilitated to ensure their success. Work on this project take some time and be rolled out progressively.
While mentioning communities, we have commenced a discussion with neighbourhood watches to understand their roles and needs within communities. We have engaged with the Dept of Community Safety at the Western Cape Government who have provided guidance on the accreditation and training process that is being offered to these pro-active citizens who care for their communities. Quite a few of our neighbourhood watch organisations still need to become accredited. These discussions will continue in a spirit of collaboration to ensure facilitation and effective functioning.
Another project being launched in the near future will be a process of reaching out to the corporate sector to harness and facilitate the efforts that many corporates are making to improve the lives of citizens and the environment. We recently met with representatives of SA Breweries who expanded on the role they have played in the Waboomskraal area to eradicate alien vegetation to improve water security for the hops farms. The project we are undertaking will assist in the further facilitation of these efforts.
In closing, I would like to appeal to all citizens to take all the necessary health precautions to counter the third wave of Covid-19 in George and the Garden Route. It is crucially important to wear masks, wash hands, apply social distancing, not meet in crowds, etc. There are many cases where families who have been affected following family gatherings. Please seek medical attention when you feel sick.