Transforming the community

2017-03-14 06:03
 Photo: suppliedMicro-entrepreneurs graduate from Paradigm Shift Business program.

Photo: suppliedMicro-entrepreneurs graduate from Paradigm Shift Business program.

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CREATING Opportunities for Community Advancement (Coca) is a non-profit-organisation that was formed in 2003. Coca has been involved in transforming the community. Its transformation is achieved by building relationships with local leaders and empowering the local community to make a difference.

According to Coca spokesperson Michelle Clark the organisation was initially started as a response to the rising number of vulnerable and orphaned children in the greater Pinetown area.

“In 2006, Redemption Point Church was asked to take ownership of the organisation and it was decided that the vision for Coca should be expanded and the acronym was changed from Christian Orphan Care Aid to Creating Opportunities for Community Advancement. Since then, Coca has started various projects with the desire to see people’s lives permanently transformed and communities advanced. As an organisation we aim to focus on three main areas to implement change which are skills development, entrepreneurship and education.

“Our mission is for the most vulnerable in our society to participate and benefit from projects which will encourage, equip and educate them to have a brighter future. We aim to achieve this through tailor made programmes as well as partnering with other non-profits in our city. Last year we embarked on two new exciting programmes. Firstly, we partnered with Paradigm Shift to run a business programme to assist micro-entrepreneurs. Through 2016 we saw 50 local entrepreneurs equipped and trained to run their businesses.”

“Through the course we had men and women increase their revenue by up to 400% with many entrepreneurs being able to save for the first time and employ other people in their community. We have also started a reading programme created by the Neema Foundation at KwaCutshwayo Primary School and Durban Children’s Home, teaching just over 200 students.”

She said the reading programme is designed to help children with foundational reading, developing skills in word recognition and deciphering.

“We have become aware that more and more children are struggling with basic reading skills which are causing them to fall behind in their other subjects too. As an organisation we are also always looking for opportunities to up skill our beneficiaries. Through sewing programmes, jewellery design, baking and various other training and skills development programmes Coca would like to see the unemployable and unskilled equipped to start businesses, develop their individual talents and find employment.”

For more information phone 031 700 5503 or visitwww.coca.co.za

 

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