Cleaning up Coast Care

STAFF REPORTER

AS part of an ongoing plan to clean up the name of Coast Care, aka Working for the Coast (WftC), in the Port Alfred area, MBB Consulting Engineers has appointed qualified nature conservator Kim Fouche as team leader for the area.

WftC is a poverty relief programme and there is no budget for this position, but MBB has employed Fouche directly to help get the project into shape and make workers accountable for their behaviour, said WftC spokeswoman Kim Clarkin.

PROMOTING ACCOUNTABILITY: Kim Fouche (bottom) has been appointed new team leader for Working for the Coast in Port Alfred and is pictured with some of the workers who are cleaning up the flood debris on Kelly’s Beach Picture: SUPPLIED

Fouche will assist project manager Mandisi Stuma with “on the spot” management and supervision of the programme.

Her contract started on November 1 and will conclude on June 30 next year when the project finishes.

“(Fouche) previously worked for the project for one and a half years, is a qualified nature conservator and lives in Port Alfred. So she has the knowledge and skills for the job,” said MBB director Pravesh Nosib.

“As team leader she will be conducting spot checks on the workers, helping to schedule work, setting and ensuring targets are met and that complaints are dealt with quickly and effectively.”

Fouche’s duties include managing and implementing operational, administrative and reporting standards as well as giving a weekly report on progress. She will also be responsible for managing and co-ordinating supervisors and their teams as well as the project’s logistics.

Clarkin said the various ward councillors are also backing a stricter approach to supervising and disciplining workers who do not meet required standards of work and conduct. There is now agreement that people must be held accountable and do their jobs or lose their jobs, she said.

The workers start at 8am and usually sign in on a register at the Port Alfred Civic Centre. They sign out at 4pm with the supervisors or Kim Fouche, wherever they are working.

However, this week they will be signing in at the point of work, mainly at Kelly’s Beach as this, and adjacent beaches, need clearing of debris following the floods, said Clarkin.

Fouche described herself as firm but fair. “I want to clean up the WftC name and believe in encouraging and motivating the teams as well as applying strict discipline when necessary.”

Another step towards ensuring people do a fair day’s work is establishing standards that provide benchmarks against which workers’ performance can be measured.

Work targets are being set several times a day and a schedule of reasonable times to walk from point A to B has been established.

· Civic Centre to Kiddies Beach area – 30 minutes;

· Kiddies Beach to Guido’s – 30 mins;

· Guido’s to Middle Beach – 30 to 40 mins;

· Middle Beach to Kelly’s Beach – 30 mins;

· Kelly’s Beach to Shelly Beach – 15 mins;

· Shelly Beach to Flame Lily river – 30 to 40 mins;

· Civic Centre to Marina entrance via robots – 30 to 40 mins;

· Marina entrance to Civic Centre via the police station – 30 to 40 mins;

· Civic Centre to East Beach first parking area – 1 hour to 1 hour 15mins;

· First East Beach parking area to second East beach parking area along beach – 30 to 40 mins;

· First parking area to second parking area along road – 20 to 30 mins.

“These times are approximate as it will take the workers longer to walk distances if there is a lot of litter, if they are walking on very loose sand or weather is bad,” said Nosib.

“So long as they stay within this time frame it doesn’t matter what pace the workers use on various stretches of the journey.”

MBB Consulting Engineers asks the public of Port Alfred to lodge complaints directly with the company so that these issues can be dealt with speedily and effectively. Contact Pravesh Nosib on (046) 622-7223, cell 083-406-0309 or e-mail mbbpkn@imaginet.co.za.

“Last week Talk of the Town carried an article on, and photograph of, Working for the Coast workers not wearing their orange bibs and walking slowly up Wesley Hill between 1.30pm and 2.15pm. However, they went off duty at 1.00pm and were walking home, without bibs, when this incident occurred. To save this type of confusion in the future please call or email me,” said Pravesh Nosib, Project Director for MBB Consulting Engineers.

“On Friday October 19 bright orange bibs printed with large numbers were handed over to the workers by Ward Councillors and ourselves. Unfortunately this event had to be postponed repeatedly as bad weather and the councillor’s timetables made pinning down a day difficult. The handover could only be held on the workers leave day so they reported for duty at 8.00am and signed out at 1.00pm.

“One day a month is allocated as a leave by the Working for the Coast project because these employees are temporary and do not qualify for a normal leave package, which is mandatory by law,” explained Nosib.

The very visible bibs are part of a strategy to promote a better work ethic among the workers as individuals, whose behavior is questionable, are easily identified. They must wear these when working and remove bibs when off duty avoid confusion.

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