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East Cape MBA’s Learnership Project a boost for local industry

Jan 30, 2017
East Cape MBA’s Learnership Project a boost for local industry

The main concern of the law is addressing the real risks that cause unnecessary workplace deaths and injuries. This is often a forgotten point because without these sometimes annoying, often poorly interpreted laws, the number of fatalities at work will definitely steadily increase.

Our problem lies in the fact that these laws have to be firmly enforced and monitored by competently trained and qualified Health and Safety personnel of which there is a scarcity and therefore a dire need to populate the Construction Industry with such personnel. A Construction Safety Officer monitors residential, commercial and industrial construction sites to make sure that they comply with safety standards and regulations to protect workers. Their job normally requires them to regularly visit all types of locations where buildings are being constructed or renovated.

It is for this reason that the East Cape MBA embarked on a project to manage 50 learners through the National Certificate: Construction Health and Safety which started on the 27 May 2013.

The Learnership Programme which targets unemployed learners has been made possible through a Discretionary Grant received from the Construction Education and Training Authority (CETA) and a partnership between the East Cape Master Builders’ Association (ECMBA) and the CETA. Fifteen Member Companies of the East Cape MBA have supported this initiative with a commitment to host these learners for their workplace experience.

The value of the Learnership is that it assists in creating jobs. Furthermore, there are hidden benefits in the triangular relationship between the Employer, Learner and Project Management.  Mainly because all three are integral proponents of the Learnership.  One of the important aspects of the relationship is that the Employer provides Workplace exposure and an opportunity for the learner to actually be absorbed into employment.

The Learnership is balanced in such a way that there is an institutional period of training followed by workplace experience which is monitored by the East Cape MBA, CETA and the Training Provider in this instance. The East Cape MBA makes use of its Health and Safety Audit team to do their monitoring.

The learners, after the completion of the Institutional and on-site training, did their Summative Assessments and met the following requirements:

  • Submitted their on-site logbooks.
  • Submitted their Portfolio of Evidence (PoE) relating to each Unit Standard.

They were then found competent in classroom training and on-site assessments. Finally CETA did their External Moderation.

This Learnership was done over a period of 9 months and after having successfully completed the course (Fundamental, Core and Electives), the learners have been awarded the National Certificate Construction Health and Safety which is at NQF Level 3 and carries 133 credits. These learners are now ready to take up their roles as Construction Safety Officers.

The East Cape MBA has successfully managed to get 80% of these learners to a level of competency and a number of them are now working for companies as Safety Officers.

The East Cape MBA together with the support from CETA can feel extremely proud of adding value to the Construction Industry by producing qualified personnel to monitor and manage the activities on

Construction sites for the protection of workers and thereby reducing the high fatality rate that plagues the Construction Industry.

Image: Bulelwa Norawana (Learner) accepting her Health and Safety Certificate from Greg Steele, Executive Director, Eastern and Southern Cape(Master Builders Association)