JSE- and ASX-listed Orion Minerals’ introductory mining familiarisation short courses within the Siyathemba municipality, in the Northern Cape, have raised public awareness of the mining industry and the opportunities it offers, the company reports.
The five-day short courses have been offered free-of-charge in Prieska, Marydale and Niekerkshoop, to residents who have completed their Grade 12 and have an interest in mining.
According to Orion, the programme has, to date, been successfully completed by 279 participants, with the total number registered for the first programme being 300.
The training is facilitated by an accredited service provider, Mathome Training and Development, and participants earn credits towards industry-recognised mining-related qualifications.
The training initiative is in line with Orion’s firm commitment to ensuring that local communities benefit from its operations.
“The initiative has been exceptionally well received and we are encouraged by the number of residents that have applied to attend. This is the first step in the process to equip local residents with skills that will enable them to participate in future mining-related job opportunities,” Orion COO Walter Shamu says.
Moreover, Orion’s new generation base metals mine at Prieska will require a highly skilled workforce.
The development of the Prieska project is expected to give the towns of Prieska, Niekerkshoop and Marydale a boost through prioritising local employment, wherever possible.
The project is also set to encourage entrepreneurship and the establishment of mining-related businesses in the region.