Byline: Refeloe Letsoisa

16 February 2024

A group of 40 smallholder farmers graduated from Sasol’s Bridge to Work Iphepe farming programme on Thursday, 15 February 2024 at Sasol Recreation Club in Secunda. 
This is after receiving training in poultry, livestock, vegetable production, and farm business management. 
The farming programme is aimed at improving the livelihoods of Sasol’s fenceline communities through agriculture. 
To ensure the growth and sustainability of the beneficiaries’ enterprises, Sasol provides them with business development and support services post-graduation.

A total of 450 emerging farmers from Gert Sibande District Municipality have so far completed the programme since its inception in 2018. 
The upskilling of smallholder farmers is a partnership between Sasol and the Department of Agriculture, Rural Development, Land, and Environmental Affairs, the African Farmers Association of South Africa (AFASA), and the Buhle Farmers Academy. 
The training programme is open to farmers and individuals who are actively involved in agriculture.

Sasol and its partners have over the past few years recruited emerging farmers within the Gert Sibande District Municipality to receive accredited training programmes that would allow them to turn their small-scale operations into viable businesses.
Sasol started the farmer support during the drought that hit South Africa in 2016, where food producers in Free State and Mpumalanga were given water tankers and boreholes. 
Applications for the next intake of Sasol’s various Bridge to Work training programmes will open during the year.