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Our climate protection contribution project in South Africa: Additional impact through the Rounding Up feature

Published January 17th, 2023

We are supporting a new project together with the Tomorrow Community as part of the Rounding-Up feature: In cooperation with the ClimatePartner Foundation, we are raising 100,000 euros for social measures to benefit Spekboom workers in South Africa. This project is special to us because it helps those who are taking care of the ecosystem supported by the climate protection contribution. Find out here why we have chosen this project and what the donations will be used for.

With our Rounding Up feature, since the end of 2021 you have been able to round up any payment you make with your Tomorrow card to the nearest euro – meaning that your remaining cents are donated to climate justice projects. What works out as just a few cents for each individual actually makes up a large collective sum that has a huge impact and can really bring about change. Together with you, we have already been able to fully finance the first projects.

Building up an ecosystem every time you pay

In the region of the Eastern Cape, 75% of the people are affected by unemployment due to droughts, a major fertilizer scandal and the economic downturn caused by the coronavirus pandemic. Poverty is part and parcel of everyday life in this part of the country. Secure and fairly paid jobs stabilize the social situation and offer promising future prospects.

Depending on the season, up to 85 people are working on our spekboom project to restore the ecosystem with the help of your card payments. The project aims to create several biodiversity and wildlife corridors. The management of the land is contracted for the next 20 years by our partner Ecoplanet Bamboo Group. These are therefore secure employment relationships designed for the long term. We want to use this bond with the local people to strengthen the region through further measures.

Rounding Up for the workers

With your rounding up contributions, we want to finance a number of social and health-related measures for the workers - from the construction of a soccer field, to the prevention of snake bites, to a secure energy supply.

In the following, we will present three planned measures in more detail:

1. Food, health and safety We want to provide the workers with water to ensure that they drink enough during their shifts. Most of the workers don’t take enough food with them to work. To improve this situation, we want to offer the workers two healthy meals per week and promote the self-sufficiency of the workers on the farm. We also want to improve the team’s general level of health and offer additional health and safety courses for this purpose. Here we want to put a particular focus on the prevention of alcoholism and violence. 

2. Solar power Since 2007, South Africa has been having regular power cuts. In 2022, they even lasted for up to six hours a day. After working an eight-hour shift, the workers often return to a dark house. To ensure that the supervisors living on the farm aren’t affected by these regular power cuts, we want to install solar modules on their houses. This means that every family will be able to power a small refrigerator, turn on their lights while they cook and charge their cell phones.

3. Future prospects In the townships where many of the workers and their families live, there is a lack of opportunities to gain work experience after finishing school. To help these people in their search for a job, we want to offer six-month internships on the project. Literacy is still a challenge in the lives of the workers and their children. A lack of access to books in the townships is part of the problem. This is why we want to set up a small library offering a mix of educational and entertaining books. Most of our workers have children who are still in school. The government provides the transportation and school materials, but not the school uniform, which can cost up to 80 dollars per child. This is why we want to finance one school uniform for one child per worker. 

Transparency information: We invoice the associations and NGOs that we support with Rounding Up for the costs incurred on our part, for the transaction fees, for example, or the costs of communicating the feature. That is how we, as a gGmbH (a German charitable limited liability company), generate an income that will enable us to establish Rounding Up as a stand-alone impact driver in the long term.