Forestry operation can sometimes be intrusive for people living and operating in the local area; however they do generate significant social and economic benefits as well as support for the villages and local businesses. KVTC is committed that the benefits are shared with those located nearest to its operations.
KVTC aims to work with communities in the project area for a better environment and livelihood for all stakeholders involved. KVTC strives to engage people in the project area to actively care for the environment and to create opportunities for economic development.
Communication & Consultation
Communicating with our neighbours and operating as part of the community is important to us. To maintain our two way dialogue with stakeholders, KVTC:
Ensures an open and transparent relationship with local people, politicians, community representatives and other local groups through provision of information about the operations and policies of KVTC
Provides information through verbal, paper based and sometimes electronic formats accessible to all individuals as far as reasonably practicable
Seeks opinions and views on matters affecting local people working or engaging with KVTC
Auditing of KVTC contractors and consulting of contractor employees
Provides a forum for discussions about the Company
The Social Fund is a novel way to provide continuous support to communities that have granted land to KVTC for its forestry and processing operations.
The concept of the social Fund is that annually KVTC will make a available a sum of money towards a selected community project in each of the 14 associated villages. Fund made available through the social fund are deposited in a joint account and will only be released against an approved project.
Since 2003, projects worth $185,000 have been funded to the 11 villages surrounding KVTC.
KVTC realizes that in order to be aligned with its associated villages it needs to share a common goal as well as offer income generating activities.
In 2002 KVTC embarked on a Village Out Grower Project where annually teak plantations are being established in the associated villages. KVTC finances the establishment and maintenance of these new teak plantations and guarantees a market at a minimum age of 15 years for the trees.
The Village Out Grower Project is an extension of the Social Fund and Village Contracts and is another method to generate income for village communities.
It is in the interest of the company to operate in a healthy community from which it can recruit future staff. To support its neighbours and staff KVTC engages in following health activities:
- Employees undergo an annual medical check
- A dispensary is available at the processing site for staff to receive first aid and initial diagnosis of injuries or illnesses
- KVTC provides medical support to staff and their immediate families
- KVTC has a system of Peer Health Educators in its associated villages; these PHE’s provide training and raise awareness among villagers on most prevalent diseases such as malaria, typhoid as well as HIV/AIDS
- KVTC holds village seminars as well as work place seminars where villagers as staff are educated on the risks of HIV/AIDS
- KVTC provides free condoms at the work place
KVTC believes incentives are to be offered for services that associated villages can offer and that have a common goal, i.e. control of poaching and illegal logging as well as fire prevention and fire fighting.
KVTC engages with its associated villages through a system of Village Contracts. Under these contracts villagers assist with cleaning boundaries of KVTC land, do patrols to avoid illegal logging or poaching and ensure that no land encroachment takes place. Attached to the Village Contract is a bonus scheme where villagers are rewarded if incidents of illegal logging, poaching or fire are prevented during the course of a year.
The annual village bonuses are awarded during the Annual Village Seminar which is a forum where associated villages can engage with KVTC and discuss performance, concerns and table specific requests.