The community of Kolobetona in Mamaila, Limpopo, and surrounding areas are benefitting from the opening of the Nahakwe Lodge in the area.
Nineteen young people from the area have been permanently employed at the lodge while opportunities have also been created for local businesses.
The lodge was opened as part of the Department of Tourism’s Social Responsibility Investment project.
Minister of Tourism Derek Hanekom encouraged the lodge’s management to take extra care of the lodge.
“This marks the beginning of a new chapter for the management of the lodge. It should not happen that when we come back after five years this place does not look good,” he said.
An investment of R28.5 million was made into Nahakwe Lodge and total of 90 local people were employed during the construction phase.
Throughout the construction of the lodge, beneficiaries received accredited and non-accredited training and were equipped with
knowledge that they can use in future.
Lefa Mogale, an employee at the lodge, said it has brought change to the community because it has created jobs.
Mogale said that those employed during the construction received skills and experience that will benefit them for life.
“Of the people who were employed here during the construction phase, 90 percent of them got jobs somewhere. This goes to show that the skills they have were of high quality and value.”
He added that local entrepreneurs are also benefitting as some of their sculptures, beads, crafts and other creations were bought by the lodge and sold to the visitors.
* Thomas Mokou works for the Department of Tourism.