The Hope Factory ignites community impact through strategic partnership with KPMG

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Written by Kelly Sin Hidge, The Hope Factory

“If everyone is moving forward together, then success takes care of itself.” – Henry Ford

The spirit of collaboration and strategic partnerships in business is a powerful tool for success and something that is a vital building block to achieve better collaborative initiatives and national goals such as our Sustainable Development goals. If we look at SDG17 that speaks into partnerships, we see “a call for the need for true collaboration in the pursuit of all the goals by the year 2030.”

In this year’s SDG report sourced by the South African Institute of Charted Accountants (SAICA) we see their passion to collaborate with others to achieve greater goals. It called on SAICA members and entities, “to align policies, share visions and create coordinated and collaborative projects to pave the way forward and have a real and tangible impact on society.”

The Hope Factory has seen the tangible impact of powerful collaborations and one partnership we can boast of is our on-going partnership with KPMG since 2020 for community impact. THF is an NPC passionate about Skills and Socio-Economic development. THF was founded in 2001 and formalized in 2004, powered by SAICA, as part of the Learning and Development division.

Where the partnership began

In 2020 The Hope Factory implemented a specialized 4-month Covid-19 Relief Programme. This programme was unique as we partnered up with KPMG for volunteers to train and coach our beneficiaries. We saw amazing results and we commenced the programme with 29 KPMG volunteer trainers and coaches.

Jill Johnson, Regional Branch Executive of both SAICA ED and The Hope Factory said at the end of the programme last year, “We celebrate our entrepreneurs for their leadership, tenacity and grit. These are essential skills today, in a time where our world is in turmoil. We want to celebrate our partners and coaches. A special thank you to KPMG, thank you for your time and investment into our entrepreneurs.”

The Covid-19 Relief Programme was fully virtual through MS Teams training and coaching sessions and data was provided to all participants to assist with their connectivity. Focal areas included Leadership in a time of crises, how to become tech savvy, making good financial decisions through financial literacy training and financial coaching focusing on compliance, invoicing, costing, and effective financial management.

Marileen de Wet, Associate director at KPMG and one of the 2020 coaches says, “Working side by side with an upcoming entrepreneur was a fulfilling experience for me. Even though I was able to share some of my financial knowledge to empower the mentee to understand the things that she needed to focus on from a financial perspective, I also learned from her and was amazed by her positivity, resilience and “can do” attitude. For me it was a real privilege to be part of such an amazing initiative.”

Fast forward into 2021

The new year brought upon new prospects of a continued partnership with KPMG. In August THF kicked off its flagship Entrepreneurial Development Programme empowering 30 beneficiaries. We continue to be very proud to announce a continued collaboration with KPMG with 34 volunteer coaches and trainers for the programme on-going into 2022.

Phase one of the programme will educate the entrepreneurs on key fundamentals needed to operate successful start-up business. The national programme consists of Training Workshops and Group Mentoring Sessions covering a variety of topics focused on Personal Development, Business and Finance skills.

As always, The Hope Factory has a passion for community development, apart from the national virtual participants The Hope Factory has also targeted some key Eastern Cape communities namely, New Brighton, Korsten, Shauderville, Bethelsdorp and Walmer Township.  This programme is made possible through Socio-Economic Development contributions as well as the strategic partnership with KPMG.

Daniel Da Silva CA(SA) and KMPG Associate Director, one of our KPMG volunteer coaches for the 2021 programme says, “When the opportunity came around again this year, there was no doubt in my mind that I had to be part of this great initiative. It is a truly rewarding experience and seeing the impact the programme has for the mentees that fully embrace it restores hope for the recovery of our economy. Almost 18 months into Covid we can already see the breakdown in mental wellness not only for those who have job security but even more so for struggling entrepreneurs, above all I most looking forward to this group of mentees realising they are not alone in the challenges they face and that through enablers such as this programme that they can obtain resources (whether it be skills, tools, connections, a sounding board or even just a should to cry on) necessary to overcome these challenges.”

Furthermore, over and above the on-boarding of 34 coaches THF and KPMG also partnered together with Bayfm 107.9, a community radiostation based in Nelson Mandela Bay and further Eastern Cape. The Hope Factory delivers a talk show once a month called Small Biz Talk, that delivers expertise tips and advise on various business functions to small business owners or people who are interested in starting a business. This year we have had the privilege to work with various associate directors at KPMG as they have volunteered to give some great advice on the show. Some of the topics included taxation, financial compliance, costing, access to markets and more.

In closing, The Hope Factory looks forward to the impact of this year’s programme and any future endeavours together with KPMG. It is no doubt that a partnership-based approach in business allows the extension of capacity in many ways and forms. May the power of collaboration set a new standard for us to truly see change in our communities and for our economy at large. 

Media contact: Kellys@thehopefactory.co.za

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