Supporting the fight against COVID-19
The Coronavirus (COVID-19) pandemic is proving enormously disruptive, upending lives, workplaces and economies across the globe.
As a responsible and active corporate citizen, we fully recognise our duty and deeper responsibility to continue supporting our fenceline communities, and society at large, in these challenging and uncertain times.
Working hand-in-hand with a broad range of social partners – in particular government, civil society and our fenceline communities – we are driving our response efforts to equip and support those who are at frontlines of fighting this pandemic.
We are excited to share some of the initiatives Sasol is supporting across the Group to help in this humanitarian crisis. We will continue to share these stories in the weeks and months ahead.
RELIEF FOR HOSPITALS UNDER PRESSURE
It is only by standing together as citizens of a local and global community that we will be able to combat COVID-19. We are all in this together and we all have a positive role to play. The handover of six multifunctional containers to the Provincial Health Department that took place in Temane earlier this month was an opportunity for Sasol to once again confirm our commitment to supporting the people of Mozambique.
Provincial Health Department leader Sónia Maheso said the containers will be used for consultations and, depending on the needs of each health unit, can be used for hospitalisation in Inhassoro. She also said that the containers will be a major contributor in elevating the demand on hospital beds and facilities.
Inhassoro Administrator, Dulce Canhemba, commented on the positive role that we are playing in the fight against COVID-19 in the country, a position shared by the permanent secretary of the Govuro District. He added, “This is a demonstration of how private sector, government and ordinary citizens can play a huge role in flattening the curve”.
SAFEGUARDING THE FRONT-LINE GUARDIANS
Medical professionals and facilities are at the forefront of fighting COVID-19 and saving lives. It was with this in mind that Sasol partnered with AngloGold Ashanti and Imperial Group to ensure that staff and patients at four major Gauteng provincial hospitals are equipped with bulk supply of hand sanitiser. These are: Chris Hani Baragwanath Academic, Charlotte Maxeke Academic, Helen Joseph and Leratong hospitals.
Sasol and AngloGold Ashanti are sharing the production costs of the specially manufactured bulk-storage tanks for hand sanitiser. Imperial Group, which plays a crucial role in ensuring South Africa’s supply chains continue to function, is bringing its freight and logistics expertise to the partnership by ensuring the sanitiser tanks are safely transported to the four hospitals in Gauteng.
Thabiet Booley, Senior Vice President of our Base Chemicals division said, “We are pleased that our internally produced sanitisers will provide these hospitals with additional support to reduce the risk of COVID-19 spreading to front-line medical staff, patients and visitors. It’s an exciting partnership for us as it leverages complementary assets and skill sets that are vital to changing the course of this pandemic”.
FAST TRACKING BULK HAND SANITISER DONATIONS
Responding to the significant increase in demand for hygiene products, we have fast tracked the production of a new unique alcohol blend, which is safe and suitable for the manufacture of disinfectants and hand sanitisers. In partnership with South African government we have prioritised local supply across the country, while maintaining stable prices.
Working with local partners we are also manufacturing our own hand sanitiser products, specifically to meet the needs of our fenceline communities near to our various operational sites, as well as our employees. We will do the same in Mozambique.
As we ramp up supplies, we are rapidly increasing donations to these communities and local hospitals. In partnership with a Sasol enterprise and supplier development beneficiary, we will scale this up to 100000 litres per week.
With lockdowns and travel restrictions in effect in several parts of the world, many South Africans find themselves stranded and unable to return home. We understand their plight and want to help in the effort to reunite them with their families and loved ones.
Here we have made available over a million litres of jet fuel, enough to power an A340-600 aircraft for five long haul trips. This is for government to use in the repatriation of citizens and the transportation of urgent medical supplies.
BRINGING THE MESSAGE HOME ON THE GROUND
One of the most effective tools in supporting the fight against Covid-19 is ensuring that factual and impactful messages reach the masses in a language they understand and relate to. To enable more inclusive communication, Sasol has delivered 300 000 pamphlets on Covid-19 in Sesotho and English in Sasolburg. Similarly, in Sasolburg we have rolled out targeted messaging using seven billboards in the communities of Vaalpark and Zamdela.
EMPOWERING SMALL ENTERPRISES TO PROTECT OUR SENIOR CITIZENS
We have donated 3 000 non-medical cloth face masks to the elderly and physically challenged in Metsimaholo. This gesture was made in response to the National Department of Health’s recommendation that everyone in South Africa should wear a cloth face-mask (also known as a non-medical mask) when in public.
We sourced the masks from a local venture, Mampoi Exclusive Designs. According to the owner, Mampoi Zwane, Sasol’s support contributed significantly to enable them to buy an industrial sewing machine that would vastly increase their production rate.
Mampoi hails from Zamdela. After completing her schooling at Nkgopoleng Secondary School, she built on her sewing skills taught to her by her mother, by attending various tertiary colleges.
Although she is sad to have missed exhibiting her work at the Rand Easter Show this year due to the lockdown, Mampoi is grateful for the opportunity to produce the much-needed face masks. “I am excited about all our creations, from the wedding gowns that we regularly produce to these face masks. You can only be successful if you love what you do,” said Mampoi. Apart from her, Mampoi Exclusive Designs has a further four employees in service.
SUPPORTING FIRST RESPONDERS
In our Southern African communities, we have been more targeted in supporting the needs of law enforcement agencies who are tasked with ensuring the safety of ordinary citizens.
In Secunda, we provided a mobile accommodation structure for the South African National Defense Force (SANDF), which is equipped with a generator, for which Sasol donates diesel supply daily. In addition, we supply diesel for the generator that is utilised at the check point on the N17 national road. To date we have donated 745 litres of diesel.
Senior management officials from the South African Police Services conducted an oversight visit to see if people are adhering to lockdown regulations in Secunda. We used the opportunity to officially hand over a further 600 litres of sanitizer to the Minister of Police for his troops on the ground.
As part of our ongoing partnership with government to help flatten the coronavirus curve, Sasol donated 575 hazmat suits for tracer teams, and an additional 1 800 litres of sanitizer and 500 bars of handsoap to local government representatives in the community.
Lastly, Sasol donated 66 mattresses to an identified homeless community, who are being accommodated in order to safeguard them during the national lockdown period.
In Sasolburg, we donated rechargeable torches to law enforcement agencies to assist them with document inspections during night time operations.
In Mozambique, we donated 5 000 litres of bulk hand sanitizer.
In Northern America, Sasol has pledged $100 000 towards Covid-19 relief efforts in communities, with an emphasis on supporting front-line emergency responders, healthcare professionals, educators and food service providers.
Of the total funds pledged to assist the region, $70 000 is earmarked for the Southwest Louisiana community, where we employ 1 200 people at our facilities. Our contribution, which will be administered through the fund at the Community Foundation of Southwest Louisiana, will provide funds for personal protective equipment, sanitation supplies and meals to emergency responders and healthcare workers.
KEEPING THE WHEELS OF EDUCATION WELL-OILED
Two weeks ago, we announced that the Sasol Foundation is partnering with various entities to provide free online and interactive Science, Technology, Engineering and Mathematics (STEM) learning for Grades R to 12 learners in South Africa.
We are happy to report that since the go-live of 30 March 2020 we have reached 45 000 learners through the various online learning platforms to date.
Similarly, in North America, Sasol will be directing resources to City of Westlake public schools to help educators transition to online learning and partner with the McNeese State University Small Business Development Center for virtual small business support courses. This will assist in minimising the disruptive effect of lockdowns which are in effect in the region.
KEEPING OUR FOOT ON THE PEDAL
Our strong relationship with the Gert Sibande Municipality, in Secunda is one that we value therefore we try our best to support this community. Below are some of the items that have been donated:
- Supply of general hygiene and safety kit materials - We have donated products such as masks, gloves, sanitisers, hand soap, linen, blankets, cutlery and medical aprons to support medical and quarantine facilities close to our operations.
- Provision of sanitisers - To date we have donated over 14 000 litres of sanitiser to our stakeholders around Gert Sibande District, with the District Department of Health being one of the recipients.
- Mobility during community screening and testing campaign - In partnership with the Osizweni Science Centre and Sasol Foundation, we will support the Department of Health by providing three mobile science laboratory vehicles to assist the department with staff mobility during the community screening and testing campaign.
In response to the growing demand for hand sanitisers, we have been and are producing hand sanitiser in-house for distribution to frontline COVID-19 health workers and community support structures. 2 000 litres are distributed per week to 41 clinics and five hospitals in the Fezile Dabi District, the local SAPS, Public Safety, Correctional Services, Metsimaholo Local Municipality offices, District Municipal offices, Provincial Department of Health and community support structures.
Our Satellite Operations team is supporting frontline responders (health officials, police and emergency personnel) and places of public interests such as Taxi Ranks and Bus Stations with hygiene products (sanitisers and soaps) as well as protective clothing such as masks and gloves in our affected fence-line communities.
HI-TECH EQUIPMENT FOR SYRACUSE HOSPITALS
Sasol Italy, together with Confindustria Siracusa and companies of the Petrochemical hub in Augusta - Erg Power, Isab-Lukoil, Sonatrach Italian Refinery - gave their availability to support the needs of hospitals in the province of Syracuse. With this initiative, emergency equipment for intensive treatment of Covid-19 patients in critical health condition will be enabled. Twelve multi-parameter monitors and three monitoring centers will allow for twelve patients to be treated.
FREE STEM LOCKDOWN DIGITAL SCHOOL
To minimise the impact of the national lockdown on the education sector, the Sasol Foundation has partnered with the Department of Basic Education and Africa Teen Geeks, to provide access to free online and interactive STEM virtual classes and e-study guides free of charge for Grades 0 – 12 learners at home. Various celebrities have joined in on the e-learning platforms by reading to the kids and encouraging them to fully engage with the learning material.
COMFORT IN TIME OF CRISIS
In Secunda, we have partnered with the Govan Mbeki Local Municipality to set up COVID-19 testing stations and has also distributed mattresses to homeless people who have been accommodated in shelters.
SASOL DONATES A MILLION LITRES OF JET FUEL TO SUPPORT REPATRIATION OF SOUTH AFRICANS
SASOL RESPONDS TO INCREASED DEMAND FOR ALCOHOLS USED IN SANITISERS AND DISINFECTANTS IN SOUTH AFRICA
SASOL FOUNDATION OFFERS FREE ONLINE PRIMARY AND HIGH SCHOOL TEXTBOOKS AND RESOURCES DURING LOCKDOWN
DIGITAL SCHOOL EXPANDS TO TV AS SCHOOL CALENDAR REMAINS IN LIMBO