Western Limb’s vision and mission

Western limb is an initiative that was set up by Kevin Williams in the aftermath of the Marikana tragedy in August 2012.  While the platinum resources which have led to have fuelled the area’s growth would not last forever, Kevin believed that a different future for the area was possible, that all the elements are there for the area to be a healthy, thriving community.  What is missing is communication among stakeholders, leading to a shared commitment and accountability to creating and implementing a plan for the future of the area.

Led by team member Meisha Robinson, we went through a process of defining our vision and mission.

The vision we created is that

All people in the Western Limb region live fulfilling and prosperous lives

The mission we created it to

Empower people in the Western Limb region to create positive impact for transformative change.

Would you like to be a leader in this area?

We are looking for a leader to take on leadership of this project.  There is a team of people who are experts in the field and are willing to support you.  It would be ideal for someone planning to do research on the future of the area and who also wants to take a leadership role in creating the future of the area.

Context

The long-term future of this area is uncertain.  While its mineral wealth is a huge  opportunity for development, this opportunity is in danger of being wasted.

The name Western Limb refers to the refers to the geological formation that gives rise to the rich Platinum Group Metal ore bodies around Rustenburg in the North West Province of South Africa: the Western Limb of the Bushveld Igneous Complex.

Photo credit: Step It Up

Rustenburg has been in the news, due to the tragic deaths of mineworkers at Lonmin’s Marikana Mine in August 2012. This tragedy highlights the difficult relationship between communities, mining companies and the state, a relationship that has shaped South Africa’s modern history.

The question that Western Limb is asking, and beginning to answer, is:

What will the Rustenburg mining region be like in 20 to 30 years time when the Platinum Group Metals have been mined out and the mines have closed?

Shaft at sunset

What will the communities be like?

Wall mural

What industries and job opportunities will there be?

Photo credit: Step It Up

What actions can we take now, to ensure a bright future for the Western Limb?

Photo credit: Enid Williams

We know that these are big, complex questions.  The Western Limb project had been looking at three areas to engage with these questions:

(1) community engagement

(2) academic research and publication

(3) film, music and the arts

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