The Department of Public Works and Infrastructure (DPW&I) women brought the department two accolades at the 5th Women in Construction Awards which took place on 24 May 2017 at the Gallagher Convention Centre in Johannesburg.
“The aim of the awards is to acknowledge organisations which have stepped up and developed women’s roles through innovative training programmes, and to also recognise those women who have put themselves out there and have been identified as the ones “to watch” as they get a foothold within their sector,” Athi Myoli, Director of the Women in Construction Awards.
The Assistant Director for Communications and Media Liaison within the Department of Public Works and Infrastructure, Elsonia Swarts, brought the department its first award of the night as she was awarded 2nd place for the Woman in Media and Communications Excellence category. This category focused on extraordinary calibres in delivering information about the infrastructure sector and recognizes women for their unwavering commitment and communications skills.
The Expanded Public Works Programme commonly referred to as EPWP, also scooped up an accolade through their Contractor Development Programme (CDP) which has contributed significantly in empowering black women, persons with disabilities, and youth owned companies in executing labour-intensive work. The programme was awarded 2nd place for the Most Innovative Women Training programme. The focus on this category was on “blue collar” innovative training programmes up-skilling individuals and women owned SMME’s within Africa.
To receive the accolade on behalf of the department was the Chief Director for EPWP Masego Tshabalala who invested a lot of effort in trying to empower women within the Free State.
“It is a great honour to receive this award on behalf of the Department of Public Works and Infrastructure for its EPWP Contractor Development Programme. The department prides itself in innovative empow-erment initiatives that enhance the skills of women. The 2nd place award for the Most Innovative Women Training programme is motivation to continue in improving and implementing more EPWP initiatives,” said Chief Director: Masego Tshabalala
The Free State Department of Public Works and Infrastructure congratulates both Swarts and the CDP for the achievements brought to the department and most importantly for uplifting the name of the department. “I am proud of the Public Works and Infrastructure team, these awards show that we have a dedicated and hardworking workforce,” said the Head of Department, Maditse Seoke.
The Department of Public Works & Infrastructure not long ago received an award for the Best Ethical and Professional Department in the 2016 National Batho Pele Excellence Awards in Johannesburg. It is evident that Honourable MEC Dora Kotzee together with her Head of Department (HOD) Maditse Seoke have dedicated themselves to empower and serve not only the department, but also the Free State community at large. Indeed the Free State Department of Public Works and Infrastructure has delivered!