It’s been a long road, full of hope, determination and teamwork. We can finally celebrate the opening of an inspiring project for Thornybush Community, The SEDIWA Hub based in the Nourish Eco Village.
For those of you who are new to the non-profit efforts at Thornybush, the Thornybush Community was created by Thornybush in 2005. It was established as a registered non-profit organisation, with the objective of nurturing and uplifting the surrounding local communities adjacent to the protected wildlife areas.
Located on the western border of the Greater Kruger National Park, and on the boundary of the northern Sabi Sand Game Reserve, Thornybush Community has primarily focused its work in two Villages, Utah and its smaller neighbouring community of Dixie.
Over the years the focus areas have expanded to encompass education, enterprise, commerce, conservation and voluntourism which has seen Nourish Eco Village as the platform to link conservation needs with community goals.
After completing the Hananani Primary School back in 2019, the main funding partners, Andersen Construction Foundation were eager to come back to South Africa and assist our communities once again. After a few years in the making, this passion project, a brand new enterprise centre The SEDIWA HUB, was born and we can honestly say, it’s been well worth the wait.
The hub was inspired to be a space where people can come to learn, and access quality accredited and non-accredited training. It’s a space to immerse themselves in hands-on learning, grow entrepreneurial ideas and build small business skills.
SEDIWA is an acronym, for Sustainable Enterprise Development in Wildlife Areas and as its name will focus on becoming a training centre which will offer everything from basic early childhood development courses to agro-processing, hydroponics training, financial literacy, recycled crafting, sewing workshops and health and safety courses.
These training courses are inspired by the needs of the surrounding lodges and local businesses, which we hope will be able to uplift and increase the employment opportunities within these communities.
Just as Nourish is focused on two main components, connecting communities to conservation, and enabling those communities to be resilient, we aim to help people access income generation through entrepreneurship and enterprise using the SEDIWA Hub to further accelerate these skills.
As both Thornybush Community and Nourish look towards social enterprise, the hub itself will also operate with income-generating components. It includes a craft shop, internet cafe, sewing centre, coffee shop and bakery. This enables income revenue for the hub itself and is a platform for artisans to sell to a wider audience.
This year Thornybush Community launched the most purposeful experience for our guests during their stay – a cultural tourism experience to visit the Nourish Eco Village where our guests are able to learn how the various community projects support education and the livelihoods of local communities. It’s an inspiring experience we encourage all our guests to explore.
To book your Community visit as an add-on to your stay please inquire here: email@example.com
We are so proud of the work done by all involved and look forward to the many life-changing stories the SEDIWA Hub will create.
Photos by Tayla McCurdy