Netcare enters development partnership with Disabled People South Africa

Initiative aims to stimulate and support entrepreneurial growth within the disability sector

Wednesday, December 13 2017

Private healthcare group Netcare has entered into a ground breaking enterprise and supplier development partnership with Disabled People South Africa (DPSA), an organisation that aims to stimulate and support entrepreneurial growth within the disability sector.

The partnership was announced by Netcare’s group human resources director, Peter Warrener, who says that the group has given a R2.5 million grant to DPSA to assist the organisation in achieving these objectives.

Photo: Netcare has entered into a ground breaking partnership with Disabled People South Africa (DPSA to stimulate and support entrepreneurial growth within the disability sector. Pictured at the handing over of the R2.5 million grant were, from left to right: Netcare’s group human resources director, Peter Warrener; the head of Rhen’s Consulting, Rene Hendricks; DPSA’s national treasurer, Sememeru Masemola; and Netcare’s general manager for enterprise and supplier development, Dr Nceba Ndzwayiba.

“We at Netcare are tremendously excited to enter into this enterprise and supplier development partnership with DPSA, which builds on our commitment to disability mainstreaming and seeks to place persons with a disability at the centre of inclusive economic growth, poverty alleviation and job creation initiatives in South Africa,” adds Warrener.

“Supporting small business growth within the disability sector is a natural progression of Netcare’s transformation endeavours, which promote the creation of a society and economy that is inclusive of all South Africans, and has historically placed a particular emphasis on those with disabilities.”

According to Netcare’s general manager for enterprise and supplier development, Dr Nceba Ndzwayiba, the initiative with DPSA also forms part of Netcare’s broader supply chain diversification strategy which aims to increase Netcare’s procurement spend on 51% black owned emerging micro enterprises and qualifying small enterprises to at least R1 billion by 2020.

“DPSA, through Rhens’ Consulting, will champion the identification, training and development of high potential entrepreneurs within the disability sector and serve as a source of vendors for identified categories of products and services currently utilised by Netcare,” explains DPSA’s national treasurer, Sememeru Masemola.

Rhens’ Consulting is a 100% women owned exempt micro-enterprise headed by Rene Hendricks. Rhens’ specialises in learning solutions for, and the recruitment of persons with disabilities, where this offering was formalised through a joint venture with DPSA’s investment holdings subsidiary, which in turn has the DPSA mandate to explore commercial income streams in the interest of DPSA and its disabled member beneficiaries.  

 Masemola says that Rhens’ Consulting has received a grant as one of the outcomes of the Netcare partnership with DPSA, for the purpose of driving entrepreneurship development initiatives on behalf of DPSA and Netcare.

“Rhens’ Consulting has also been listed as a preferred recruitment agency for highly specialised nursing professionals for Netcare’s Western Cape region, as part of our supplier development programme. In addition, office space, equipment and access to various resources are provided to Rhens’ Consulting at no cost as part of our efforts to assist them to be operationally and financially sustainable,” explains Ndzwayiba.

Warrener says that Netcare has hitherto focused on driving learnerships and internships amongst other purposeful skills development initiatives that lead to permanent employment of persons with a disability.

“The group’s Sinako initiative and the focused attention on inclusive recruitment processes have yielded excellent results so far with regard to the representation of employees with a disability within Netcare, which rose by more than 1 000%, from 60 in 2008 to 626 in 2017. As at October 2017, over 3% of our workforce comprises valuable employees who have a disability”.

“We recognise the opportunity and responsibility that large corporations have to utilise their structures and resources to make a meaningful difference to small and medium businesses through enterprise and supplier development,” notes Ndzwayiba.

Ndzwayiba says that Netcare has consequently formed enterprise and supplier development partnerships with a number of majority black owned small enterprises which offer a range of products and services in emergency services, medical equipment, linen production and social services.

“Netcare is also currently evaluating opportunities and a number of proposals received from prospective enterprise and supplier development partners.”

One such enterprise and supplier development partner is Dube and Pottas Inc., with whom Netcare has had a relationship since 2012, when they opened a professional social worker services practice at Netcare Rehabilitation Hospital.

“Having been granted operating premises and a range of resources at no cost, Dube and Pottas have since expanded to Netcare Rosebank, Netcare Milpark and Netcare Sunninghill hospitals. Their monthly revenue has increased by more than five times since their inception and they now employ 12 social workers compared with the three they started out with five years ago,” adds Ndzwayiba.

“For us at Netcare, it is essential to contribute to the creation of an entrepreneurship culture in our country and in the healthcare sector in particular, which is critical to the sustainability of our country.”

“The small business sector contributes almost 24% of the country’s total wage bill; and accounted for 35% of GDP overall in 2008 according to the Department of Trade and Industry (dti). Presently, however, South Africa has a high failure rate of small enterprises, projected to be as high as 75%.

“There are a range of nuanced and location specific factors that impede the success of small businesses in South Africa, which include lack of access to funding and other forms of support, denial of opportunities, and general lack of mentorship. We hope to make a meaningful difference in the removal of such barriers within our sphere of influence,” concludes Warrener.


Issued by:    Martina Nicholson Associates (MNA) on behalf of Netcare
Contact:    Martina Nicholson, Graeme Swinney, Meggan Saville and Pieter Rossouw     
Telephone:    (011) 469 3016
Email:        [email protected], [email protected], [email protected] and   [email protected]