The ADC's Socio-Economic Development Model
The Assumption Development Centre (ADC) is a skills training and small business development centre in Joza Township, Grahamstown. The ADC is the only centre of its kind in Joza, and began operating in 2014.
The two main partners of the ADC are the Missionary Sisters of the Assumption and Rhodes University, through its Community Engagement Unit. The Assumption Sisters have had a missionary presence in Grahamstown for over 160 years now. Rhodes University, with over 8 000 students, is the biggest employer in the town.
The ADC has also established working partnerships with the local chamber of commerce (Grahamstown Business Forum), individual businesses, departments at Rhodes University, local and national NGOs and other organisations. The ADC has signed Memoranda of Understanding with the National Arts Festival and the local municipality – Makana Municipality.
The ADC has spent the better part of the last two years developing a socio-economic development model to help unlock the huge human potential that exists in Joza and, in the process, to reverse the high unemployment rate among especially the youth. The ADC model is based on the provision of a solid foundation in social and personal financial skills before participants embark on more specialised training and coaching in one of three areas: job seeking, supplementing household income and small business development.
Through its partnership with local businesses the ADC has secured a number of both casual and permanent internships. Going forward the ADC plans to expand this exciting work initiative to include more businesses, local private schools, Rhodes University and Makana Municipality.
Training in small business development takes the form of both general and specialist courses, augmented with mentorships provided by the staff at the ADC, Grahamstown Business Forum, Rhodes University and other volunteers in Grahamstown.
Small businesses that show the necessary drive and potential to succeed are rewarded with assistance to find start-up capital. In this regard, the ADC recently secured funding from a leading South African company.
In summary; the aim of the ADC is to break the cycle of poverty in Joza through empowering individual members of the community to reach their potential, whether it be as an employee or a self-employed business person.