Lubumbashi, Congo (Kinshasa), April 17, 2018 --(PR.com
)-- “We hear a lot about child labour in the mining industry, and although we see mining companies strengthening their procedures to prevent illegal (and underage) miners, we don’t see enough alternatives offered to the youth upstream.” This is according to Sarah Moser, project coordinator at the BUMI non-profit organization, located in Kamalondo, Lubumbashi, and focused on helping orphaned and vulnerable children. BUMI is DRC Mining Week's project of choice as social responsibility outreach programme. Currently BUMI provides global care to 150 children.
A few years ago, BUMI started an agriculture and farming programme aimed at training youth while generating income and food to cover the organisation’s needs. Sarah Moser says this programme has been a great success: “Year after year, we have noticed how this programme could be a real opportunity for the youth, especially for those who couldn’t attend normal schooling and were used to work and earn money. The teenagers following our programme are being trained in agriculture and income generating activities like poultry, horticulture and gardening, in addition to academic upgrading. They can also sell some of their produce on the market to make pocket money. Later in their lives, they can create their own business and become independent.”
She adds, “We are very proud of a dozen young people who have finished their curriculum at BUMI and now work in agriculture for a living. This year our focus is to take this programme to a higher level by streamlining and developing the production and the marketing. We already supply individuals and restaurants like the Pullman Grand Karavia, The Luano City Farmers’ Market and the Bambou and we want to extend our customer range by opening a Sunday Market.”
Partnership is extremely important
Sarah Moser says they are really thankful for the trust and commitment the DRC Mining Week is showing in BUMI’s social projects: “This partnership is extremely important as it comes with a long-term capacity building support. For instance, this year our partnership will focus on our Reception and Family Reintegration Programme that takes place at our centre in Kamalondo, a working-class district in Lubumbashi. This is the place where children affected by trauma, malnutrition or other issues are brought for treatment.”
According to the BUMI project director, the mining sector can make a significant contribution to social actions by supporting grassroots organizations like theirs. She explains: “Often, mining companies contract ad hoc agencies to implement their CSR projects. By doing so, they can have direct control of the costs and outcome but this strategy can make the impact less sustainable. BUMI has more than 20 years of experience in the child protection and has showed robustness throughout the years.”
“BUMI has built a solid reputation in the caring and professional work that they do amongst the most vulnerable members of society, namely children,” says DRC Mining Week event director, Emmanuelle Nicholls. She continues, “We are impressed with the programmes that BUMI has developed over the years and we feel proud and honoured to be involved and play a small part in a process that ensures children are cared for in an environment that allows them to regain their balance and facilitate re-socialisation.”
The full interview with BUMI’s Sarah Moser can be viewed on the website.
DRC Mining Week, a long-running, flagship mining conference and expo, will return to the mining hub of Lubumbashi from 13-15 June. The event is the largest mining and industrial platform in the DRC, showcasing the vast investment opportunities in the sector.
As with previous editions of event, DRC Mining Week has already secured impressive industry support for this year from leading industry giants, including Engen and FBNBank as diamond sponsors, Sofiebanque, Standard Bank and Tenke Fungurume as platinum sponsors while Axishouse, Copperbelt Energy, Epiroc, ERG, IDC, Ivanhoe Mines, Randgold Resources, Vodacom are back as gold sponsors. South Africa and Zimbabwe are hosting country pavilions at the event.
DRC Mining Week is organised by Spintelligent, a leading Cape Town-based organiser of exhibitions and conferences across the continent in the infrastructure, real estate, energy, mining, agriculture and education sectors. Other well-known events by Spintelligent include African Utility Week, Agritech Expo Zambia, Mining Baraza, Future Energy East Africa, Future Energy Nigeria and Nigeria Mining Week. Spintelligent is part of the UK-based Clarion Events Group.
DRC Mining Week:
Pre-Conference Power Focus Day: 13 June 2018
Conference and Expo: 14-15 June 2018
Site visit: 13 June 2018
Location: The Pullman Grand Karavia Hotel, Lubumbashi, DRC