Developing Communities

Community development is a core part of all EDF Renewables projects, with the developments creating numerous jobs and resulting in key socio-economic development initiatives in the communities they are situated in.

Grassroots Youth Development Programme

"Energising our youth, powering our future"
Each wind farm operated by EDF Renewables contributes a percentage of its revenues towards Enterprise Development (EnD) and/or Socio-Economic Development (SED) initiatives within a 50 km radius from the Wind Farm. This is done under the Grassroots Youth Development (GYD) programme, a philanthropy programme which aims to deliver lasting social and economic progress to local communities of EDF Renewables’ clean energy projects. GYD aims to create virtuous cycles in local communities by empowering projects and small businesses with much needed mentorship, skills transfer and development capital, in order to create sustainable businesses and projects that have a significant impact on the lives of young people while creating employment opportunities in these communities.

Initiatives that qualify for GYD funding

Non-Profit Organisations that provide socio-economic development opportunities to young people through the implementation of education, sports, arts and culture programmes that offer:

  • Hope and counselling to troubled youths
  • Employment of mentors, coaches, administrators etc
  • Role models
  • Provision of life skills, and the
  • Development of leadership qualities

Small black owned enterprises that operate in industries such as:

  • Agriculture
  • Retail
  • Textile and manufacturing
  • Construction
  • Small scale renewables etc
GYD aims to support community based SMME’s on their path towards economic growth and self-sustainability.
Sofisa & Phillips Development Agency (SPDA), a 51% black-owned Level 2 EME based in Nelson Mandela Bay, is the appointed implementation agent responsible for identifying potential beneficiaries, sourcing applications, making recommendations, negotiating contracts with the selected beneficiaries, as well as monitoring and reporting on the initiatives that receive GYD funding.

Key Socio-Economic Development Projects

Depending on the performance of EDF Renewables’ operational projects, GYD spends the allocated ED and SED funds on projects chosen each year. Below is a glimpse of some of the key projects that have received funding from the GYD programme.

Masinyusane Bursary

Masinyusane is a registered non-profit organization dedicated to the upliftment and development of disadvantaged South Africans. The programme focuses on assisting selected recipients in Gqeberha and surrounding areas with education and youth development. It aims to empowered citizens from disadvantaged communities to realise their dreams, uplift their families, and to serve as role models.

EDF Renewables has funded 18 learners to study for tertiary qualifications at various higher learning institutions in South Africa. The programme creates jobs for mentors who go above and beyond their scope to ensure the wellbeing of the beneficiaries, which in turn enables confidence and leads to better academic progress.

The beneficiaries receive bursaries to pay for: tuition, books, accommodation, food, transport and a monthly stipend.

Advantage Tennis Academy

Advantage Tennis Academy’s (“ATA”) programme aims to make professional coaching, appropriate facilities, and participation in elite tournaments accessible in an ongoing and reliable manner to their beneficiaries, school pupils from surrounding schools. The goal is for players to excel in provincial and national tournaments and opening up opportunities for those who excel to play professional tennis in the future, or to secure employment in tennis coaching. The programme benefits 200 children across the Nelson Mandela Bay region.

Khulasande Sports Development (“KSD”)

Khulasande Sports Development provides opportunities for learners to participate in organised, quality sports programmes, and equips its coaches and facilitators with the skills and experience to develop into professional sports leaders and administrators.

This program is implemented in seven schools. The main outcomes of the programme are:

  • Improved discipline
  • Improved eating habits
  • Improved cooking habits (parents of the beneficiaries)
  • Improved sports performance
  • Active children
This programme also supports 500 children through their nutrition programme (provision of lunch packs after every coaching session and 50 jobs created for youth.

Waves for Change

Waves for Change (W4C) provides a child friendly mental health service to at-risk youth living in unstable communities. Through access to safe spaces, caring mentors, and a provision of weekly ‘Surf Therapy’ sessions, W4C gives children skills to cope with stress, regulate behaviour, build healthy relationships, and ultimately make positive life choices.

Waves for Change launched a Surf Therapy programme in January 2017. The programme provides mental health support (mentoring and psychoeducation) to help at-risk youth deal with the impact of trauma at home and in their communities. During 2017, 1 manager and 3 coaches were trained and employed to engage schools and social services in PE to open Surf Therapy programmes four days per week.

To date over 215 surfing and life skills sessions were facilitated by the five coaches/trainee coaches, accommodating an average of 120 beneficiaries.

Sinethemba Children’s Care Centre

Sinethemba Children’s Home cares for 18 abandoned children from in and around Port Elizabeth ensuring that these children get shelter, good nutrition and required education. The focus of the centre, run with the assistance of volunteers, is providing a nurturing and safe environment for the children where their needs for nutrition, psychological wellbeing and education are met.


Muzukidz teaches children to play the violin, It is a social development intervention approach that targets various at-risk communities living in precarious personal and social circumstances currently teaching the violin to 72 children from Grade R to 3.  Through the provision of rigorous training and personal communication, skills are developed which results in intellectual capacity, emotional stability, and self-value, before the age of adolescence. Muzukidz is underpinned by the assumption, that arts and culture can serve as powerful agents in personal development and social change. The primary goal of learning the violin is not only to play the violin, but rather to use the learning process as a means of contributing towards the participants personal growth and wellbeing, as well as the achievement of social objectives.

Enterprise Development Programme for Black Women Vendors

The Grassroots Youth Development enterprise development (EnD) programme’s vision is to meet the needs of future renewable energy projects by addressing current critical scarce and priority sector skills and reinvigorate in Black Woman Owned Vendors.

The EnD programme’s primary focus is advancing black women-owned vendors (BWOV) in proximity to EDF-RE windfarms, through technical and tailor-made outcomes, and will be implemented in three (3) phases.

The three phases focus on the following:


Phase 1

Supports skills development in emotional, financial, and business intelligence, inclusive of:
  • Entrepreneurial Leadership.
  • Unleashing Discipline, Communication, and Resourcefulness.
  • Environmental, Social, and Corporate Governance (ESG).
  • Management Systems.
  • Administration Documentation (Financial, Human Resources, Skills Development, Procurement, Safety, Health, Environment and Quality (SHEQ), and Economic Development).
  • Internal Audit, Monitoring and Evaluation.

Phase 2

Supports technical skills transfer in:
  • Civil and Electrical Works.
  • Plant Equipment Foundations & Substation and Buildings.
  • Overhead Line Construction Services.
  • Wind Turbine Transport.
  • Crane & Installation Services.
  • Overarching Security Services.
  • Sanitation Services.

Phase 3

Supports the socio-economic development bursary programme's Sector Education Training Authority (SETA) learnership in energy, construction, manufacturing and engineering, services, and transportation related supply chain gaps.

SMME Development

During the construction of the Wesley-Ciskei Wind Farm, an SMME programme was implemented to assist approximately 50 SMME’s in the communities surrounding the project site, with the aim to upskill them in the following spheres: Health and Safety, Communication Skills, Financing and Tendering to ensure they are afforded a fair opportunity to tender in the job opportunities made available in the Wesley – Ciskei Project. The project appointed SAICA ED to facilitate this.

A UFS Household Survey was conducted in the community to assess the socio economic impact that the Wesley – Ciskei project would possibly have on the local community since it was the first renewable energy project under the REIPPP programme located in the former homeland area in South Africa. the first phase of the study developed a baseline report of the area in order to have a comparative benchmark measure for post construction. The effect was measured according to the following attributes:

  • Household composition;
  • Employment, income and expenditure;
  • Housing and infrastructure changes;
  • Household assets and self-ranking of wealth;
  • Aspects of social cohesion; and
  • Business change.