In the conclusion to what started as a call for South Africans to donate their unused and unwanted power tools to a worthy cause, Brights Hardware, in partnership with Ryobi Tools, has donated R190 000 worth of brand new power tools to a non-profit skills development and job creation organisation called Learn to Earn.
“There’s no denying that power tools are expensive and yet necessary for numerous artisanal trades,” says Nita Luis, founder of family owned Brights Hardware, a Western Cape based chain of hardware stores that conceptualised the Tools Donation campaign. “Talented artisans abound in South Africa, but challenging economic times can make these items unaffordable. It is for this reason that we decided to launch the Tools Donation campaign in a bid to help. Ryobi Tools then came on board and agreed to sponsor an exceptionally generous amount of new power tools which were delivered to Learn to Earn at the end of June.”
David Nichol of Ryobi explains that they were approached by Orlando Luis, CEO of Brights to get involved in the Tools Donation campaign. “Brights is one of our largest customers in the Western Cape and we have a wonderful relationship with the company. When Orlando asked for our support, we were only too happy to get involved in such a worthy cause.”
The selection of tools donated by Ryobi included mitre saws, planers, table saws, wood lathes, cordless impact drills, sanders, laminate trimmers, grinders, routers, paint sprayers, and drill presses.
Learn to Earn – a charity organisation that aims to develop unemployed and disadvantaged people – has skills development and training centres based in Khayelitsha and Hermanus, and since 1989 has trained 14166 unemployed people with market-related skills, equipping students to become employees or self-employed entrepreneurs. Learn to Earn offer a woodworking training course in Khayelitsha as well as a handyman skills course in Hermanus. According to Learn to Earn the purpose of their Basic Handyman Skills course is to equip course graduates with the entry level knowledge and skills required in order to find employment as assistants in any of the following trades: electrical, plumbing, painting or general handyman. It is a 17 week full time course conducted in Hermanus. The Woodworking course is a 19 week long full-time course that takes place in Khayelitsha that prepares students to either go on a learnership, or to be skilled enough to seek entry level employment in the woodwork and cabinetry industry.
“This initiative by Bright’s Hardware will go a long way in equipping and facilitating job creation for previously unemployed people, who complete the Woodwork or Basic Handy skills course at Learn to Earn,” says Barbara Lipp, Communications Manager at Learn To Earn. “One of the keys to doing a quality job is having the right tools and now our graduates will have the appropriate starter pack of tools when launching their businesses. The Ryobi tools are great quality and durable, which will stand a craftsperson in good stead as they look to build their business. “On behalf of our students at Learn to Earn we wish to thank Bright’s Hardware and Ryobi for their generosity and driving this campaign.”
Brights Hardware is a Western Cape based hardware chain that was founded in 1971 as a General Dealer specialising in electrical contracting and repairs. Brights remains a family business and over the past 48 years has grown considerably, now consisting of eight stores in Boston, Blackheath, Langebaan, Mitchells Plain, Montague Park, Plattekloof, Uitzicht and a new Brackengate store.