Coca-Cola Peninsula Beverages (CCPB) in collaboration with the Western Cape Department of Local Government and the Mayoral Office of the Central Karoo District, have been actively working together over the last few weeks to provide water relief to the drought-stricken areas of the Central Karoo District.
According to the Mayor of the Central Karoo District, Dr Annelie Rabie, the area is exceptionally dry due to low rainfall, especially in the towns of Laingsburg, Prince Albert and Beaufort West. The entire district which stretches from Matjiesfontein to Murraysburg is considered high risk, due to varying levels of water challenges relating to inconsistent delivery of water.
“We are deeply concerned by the drought crisis facing communities in the district. In line with our values, we want to care for the communities we serve and help where possible during this time of water scarcity,” says Priscilla Urquhart, Public Affairs and Marketing Communication Manager at CCPB. “Partnership is one of five key areas that form part of our water stewardship strategy, hence our decision to reach out to the Western Cape Department of Local Government.”
The Western Cape Department of Local Government, which oversees the municipalities in the district, was approached by CCPB with an offer to provide three 30,000 litre water tankers to transport water to the area.
“We are extremely appreciative of CCPB’s support in our efforts to relieve the drought challenges experienced in these high-risk areas,” says Graham Paulse, Head of the Western Cape Department of Local Government. “Government cannot respond to the needs of our communities alone. We require strategic partnerships and collaboration with the private sector such as CCPB.”
In early December, CCPB’s tankers were used to initially transport a total of 180 000 litres of spring water from Mount Superior to Laingsburg, which was prioritised according to the town’s critically low water levels. The water was used to help to top up reservoirs in the area, as load shedding has prevented any water from being pumped into the reservoirs due to lack of pressure, leaving elevated areas without water completely.
To-date, the follow towns have received water in the drought stricken region:
• Lainsberg: 270 000 litres
• Prince Albert: 90 000 litres
• Ladismith, Kannaland Local Municipality: 60 000 litres
• Zoar, Garden Route District Municipality (a village and mission station 21km East of Ladismith): 30 000 litres
In addition, one truck load of 21 000 bottles of Bonaqua bottled water donated by CCPB was delivered to Laingsburg Municipality, where households received six packs of water through coordinated efforts by the municipality. There are discussions of how additional communities, including some in the Northern Cape, can be assisted.
“No single company or organisation can solve the world’s water issues alone, but through innovative partnerships such as this, this vital shared resource can be protected. We encourage other businesses to rise to the challenge in assisting the communities affected by the drought crisis. The most effective work happens when there is collaboration across the public and private sectors for the benefit of our local communities,” concludes Urquhart.
Coca-Cola Peninsula Beverages (CCPB) is the local bottler and distributor of the products of the Coca-Cola Company in the Western and Northern Cape. Products and brands include Coca-Cola, Sprite, Fanta, Stoney, Appletiser, Powerade, Bonaqua, Glaceau, PowerPlay and Monster amongst others. CCPB has been operational for 79 years, having first opened for business in 1940. Their state of the art bottling facility is based in Parow Industria, with distribution centres in Athlone, Worcester and Koelbly. For more information visit www.peninsulabeverage.co.za.