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Growthpoint celebrates youth centre opening with local community

26th March 2014
Contributor: Growthpoint Properties

Growthpoint Properties proudly celebrated the opening of a new youth centre in Marburg, Port Shepstone, KwaZulu-Natal, on Tuesday, 25 March 2014.

As part of its social commitment, Growthpoint has invested R3.4 million in this project in partnership with Genesis Trust, a local non-profit organisation committed to addressing social challenges in the communities surrounding Port Shepstone in the Ugu District of KwaZulu-Natal.

The Marburg Genesis Youth Centre was officially opened after a construction project that began in 2009 and benefitted from the support of Growthpoint from 2012. The event was attended by local dignitaries and members of the community, in addition to representatives of Growthpoint and Genesis Trust.

Official opening of the Genesis Youth Centre by Growthpoint Properties, Executive Director, Estienne de Klerk, and
Chairman of the Genesis Trust, Trevor Skorpen.

Growthpoint's Executive Director, Estienne de Klerk says, "Our efforts in this project are geared towards the enrichment of the lives of youth and local community. We are pleased to be involved in such a worthwhile project and look forward to seeing the centre and the community grow from strength to strength."

The investment in this youth centre forms part of Growthpoint's Corporate Social Investment (CSI) which supports projects focused in four key areas: education, skills development, social infrastructure and staff engagement. All this furthers empowerment in needy communities.

The Marburg Genesis Youth Centre initiative forms part of Growthpoint's R10 million investment towards bricks and mortar projects so far.

Head of Corporate Social Responsibility at Growthpoint, Shawn Theunissen, adds that Growthpoint's CSI development projects seek to help people reach their full potential and become self-sustainable. "We believe in youth development and empowerment. The centre will help engage community youth in constructive experiences that will positively impact their lives."

Standing Left to Right: Front row: Lebone Malele (Growthpoint), Craig Davis (Growthpoint), Fana Sibanyoni (Growthpoint),
Lynn Brackley (Genesis Operations Manager), Joanne Porteous (Genesis Resource Development Manager), Estienne de
Klerk (Executive Director, Growthpoint), Shawn Theunissen (Head of CSI, Growthpoint), Nishanth Naidu (Growthpoint),
Leon van Rooyen (Growthpoint). Back row: Greg Worst (Growthpoint), Trevor Downham (Founding member, Genesis),
Colin Steyn (Growthpoint)

The centre is poised to have a powerful positive impact for this community. According to the Genesis Trust, some 44% of the population in the area is under the age of 20, placing enormous pressure on resources.

Trevor Downham, Founding Member of the Genesis Trust says, "I believe that combining this building and the passion of our Genesis staff and volunteers, will make this youth centre a blessing and a great tool for the upliftment of the community around us."

The Marburg Genesis Youth Centre offers affirmative, stimulating activities for the younger members of this community from fitness facilities to music programmes, secondary school maths tuition, post-matric life skills including assistance in applying for tertiary education and employment, and assistance with tertiary studies to develop leadership potential, among other projects.

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