De Aar Solar Power has announced the funding of a development programme, aimed to teach business skills to community-based entrepreneurs and encourage sustainable business practices in under-resourced communities.

The aim of the programme is to take the skills to the identified communities, this way local entrepreneurs can be better resourced and upskilled, whilst remaining in their established locations.  The four communities that have been identified, lie within the 50km radius of the solar farm, these include: Hanover, Britstown, Phillipstown and De Aar.

“De Aar Solar Power’s Enterprise Development strategy is to assist and accelerate the sustainability of local enterprises by ploughing financial resources into the local area, so this programme, which aims to teach business skills to rural-based entrepreneurs, is an ideal fit for us,” explained Hlengiwe Radebe, Enterprise Development Director for De Aar Solar Power.

To kick start the programme, a series of information and registration sessions for will be held during November in the identified areas.  These will be managed by the Angels Resource Centre, who will host the programme, named, The Big Shake-Up. Registration dates are as follows:  12 November, 2018: Hanover; 13 November, 2018: Britstown; 14 November, 2018: Phillipstown; 15 November, 2018: De Aar.

The top 15 candidates will be identified from each town for a 4-day, SETA-approved workshop to be held in January and February 2019, where they will be given the opportunity to pitch their business idea to a panel of judges.

The training will cover a wide variety of topics, including: Personality & social styles, handling conflict & working with people; Marketing & Sales, basic customer service; Writing  a  Business  Plan, including  the  full  completion  of  a  real-world  business  plan; Business  Admin  &  Finance, including  how  to  manage  and  record  transactions,  taxes,  admin processes,  business  contracts,  insurance,  managing  staff,  business support  services,  tenders,  and  how  to  access  funding.

The final 10 entrepreneurs will win a cash prize and 12months of focused mentoring with a coach to help develop a business plan, including bookkeeping, marketing, and other business development services.

For more information on the information sessions, community members can contact joseph@angelsinc.co.za  or call 087 551 1441.

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