The Event:
Community-based Organisational Development Training Workshop

Planact was requested to assist with capacity building training of three cooperatives in Jabulani and Eland Farm, in the Randfontein Municipal Area. This is part of Planact‘s community based organisational development programme.

The three cooperatives are:
• Jabulani Agriculture Cooperative;
• Kopano ke matla Agricultural Cooperative and;
• Refetsa Tlala Agricultural Cooperative.

These three cooperatives are working together to learn, share their work and skills on planting vegetables with the aim of changing their economic and livelihoods status through vegetable gardens.

They requested Planact to assist them with organisational skills to run their cooperatives and technical skills to manage the planting and growing of the vegetables, in their respective allocated gardens.

Below are brief descriptions per cooperative:
Jabulani Agricultural Cooperative
This is a newly formed cooperative that is still undergoing the registration process. It is made up of 18 members of the community. They started their work in the garden as part of the Community Works Programme (CWP) but have since agreed with the Department of Co-operative Governance and Traditional Affairs (COGTA) to register as a cooperative and focus on sustaining the garden post the CWP programme.

DSC04678 (800x450)

Kopano Ke Matla Agricultural Cooperative:
This is an already registered cooperative that has been operating for a few years. The challenge currently is on membership turnover and they are in need of more hands to start their winter planting process.

DSC04681 (800x450)

Refetsa Tlala Agricultural Cooperative:
This is a registered cooperative that operates in one of the neighbouring farms. They operate in a school and they are made up of a number of volunteers who saw the need for food security and were compelled to establish the cooperative.

DSC04677 (800x450)

The need for intervention:

There are several unique challenges per cooperative and as such, Planact was requested to assist. Below are some on the interventions:

• Organisational skills – How to run a cooperative as a business
• Technical skills – planting and growing vegetables for commercial purpose. Produce good quality products that can compete in the market.
• Financial assistance to build offices, pack houses and cool storage containers for the vegetables produced in the gardens.

Planact started, at the beginning of June 2016, with a training workshop where the cooperatives focused on SWOT analysis to help evaluate the status of their cooperatives and individuals. Further topics covered were on the principles of a cooperative and the role of the board and manager.

Way Forward
There is more to learn on nurturing the gardens, managing a cooperative and working as a team. A three-day training session on technical skills in the garden is planned for all three cooperatives.