Over the past 8 years a very successful Fairtrade initiative, Fairhills, has been established between Origin Wine and producers in South Africa’s Breedekloof valley. The success of Fairhills has seen the employees and their families gain many life changing benefits, with more planned in the future. One of the first benefits was to erect day-care facilities on the farms for the children. Today more than 200 infants are left at the day-care facilities every day where they are fed two meals a day and are looked after by fully trained staff. Most of the staff are members from the community and have been trained using funds from the project.
Classrooms have been built at the new Lorraine Primary school and a computer centre with 50 computers is fully operational. In the mornings children from the day-cares visit the computer centre for introductory lessons and in the evenings the farm workers get the opportunity to also improve their skills on the computers. For the last 3 years the top two learners that matriculated from high school received bursaries from Fairhills that fully covered their tertiary education.
In fact, the project has been so successful, that Origin Wine has further expanded the project to other farms in the same valley. This way, more people can benefit from the rewards of the project, while at the same time encouraging the first phase’s beneficiaries to become self-sufficient and run the project for future generations.
In light of the success achieved with Fairhills in the Breedekloof, Origin Wine has proceeded to develop a Fairtrade Organic initiative in South Africa’s Northern Cape. The project is in early days of certification, but watch this space for news on developments soon.
Further social benefits include:
- The purchase of Fairhills bus
- Establishing entrepreneurial initiatives e.g. Fairhills Craft and Coffee shop
- Undertaking the largest adult literacy program in the Western Cape
- An alcohol rehabilitation program;
- A housing renovation program.
- A mobile medical unit to visit farms and schools
- A Dedicated Healthcare practitioner to administer chronic medication and see to day-to-day health issues
Haasbekkies is a pre-school facility that was developed on the farm Lemoenpoort in the Breede River Valley. The existing crèche was upgraded with Fairtrade support and now accommodates children from 3 months to 6 years old.