At the time of writing, it is the end of another exciting and highly successful year for Mining Review Africa in spite of the labour issues that had such an effect on the mining industry.

I am waiting to see what happens next year when the ‘strike’ season rolls around. I am prepared to wager that many a mining manager may silently wish for a Margaret Thatcher approach to labour issues, rather than the vacillation displayed by our government.

In the meanwhile, what has been gratifying has been the positive response of readers to the new direction the magazine is taking. I quote two examples:

‘The Mining Review Africa Issue 11 – November 2012 has been received, and I am most impressed by the quality of the contents and the wide range of articles covered, particularly the details of currents and future projects of the mining industries.’
Bill Starkey – Divisional Projects Manager: Alien Systems and Technologies

‘…with regards to your August issue of Mining Review Africa – I love the front cover. It is one of the best I have ever seen on a mining publication. The pic is amazing and says so much about the industry!’
Elfrieda Tyrer – account director at P and P Communications

What is more, this year was also the tenth anniversary of the founding of the magazine by entrepreneur Bob Stephen with the financial backing of Cape Town businessman Rudi Leitner. Ten years later, Bob still plays an active role in marketing the magazine, although he has handed the leadership of Stephen Marketing to his very able daughter Victoria.

Bob points out that even through the dips in the mining cycle, Mining Review Africa has remained a profitable business. The Mining Review Africa team looks forward to bringing you an even better publication next year.

One of the companies that, as the new editor, I have come to know this year is ELB Engineering. One might think of the mining industry as one of hardened men working with rock and steel. However, while ELB Engineering does indeed work with rock and steel, there is also a compassionate and caring aspect to the company.

ELB realizes that it operates in the broader community, and the health of the society in which it does business is also essential to the wellbeing of the particular company.

For many years, ELB Engineering has supported, among other organisations, the St Vincent School for the Deaf. It is the only school for the deaf north of Cape Town, but in spite of this, support from government is singularly lacking.

ELB also supports Masimbanbane, which is a school in Orange Farm and is also is a founder member supporting the African Academy for Computer Assisted Engineering since 1992.

ELB is also the main sponsor for the Elvis Blue Music Academy, which was founded by the rock star Elvis Blue. At the two institutions run by the Music Academy, disadvantaged children are given the opportunity to learn to play musical instruments. The company also strongly supports the SPCA.

For the past couple of years, the staff of ELB Engineering have been collecting Christmas presents for the children of the St Vincent School. This year, although ELB Engineering is not a very large organisation, it raised R3,500 in donations. Staff members also collected festive food, clothing and toys.

Bongani Rainmaker Logistics, a company with whom ELB Engineering does business, contributed 100 stationery kits to the charitable effort. These were handed over to St Vincent’s Vice Principal, Winners Shishenge, at a function at the company’s Rivonia offices.

Speaking in response to the donation, Winners Shishenge said that the shared gifts would be greatly appreciated by the children of St Vincent’s as many of them were from disadvantaged backgrounds.

In future, the company will be lending its weight to this staff initiative, and will be coordinating a winter, as well as Christmas drive for donations.