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Providing access to safe drinking water

31 MAY 2024

Water is a vital resource, essential to the wellbeing and livelihoods of communities. While access to safe drinking water is an internationally recognised human right, it is not always readily available in areas that experience water scarcity.

As part of our commitment to supporting local communities and working with them on water issues they may face, our Hillside Aluminium operation in South Africa has partnered with the King Cetshwayo District Municipality (KCD) to help enhance and sustain water security in the region.  

The KCD has endured long-term water challenges with residents not having reliable access to safe drinking water. This is due to a lack of adequate water infrastructure within the District and in some rural areas the infrastructure does not exist at all. In areas that do not have water infrastructure, residents receive their water supply from water tankers that are driven into communities and from nearby rivers. This meant that people in some areas are required to travel long distances to find and transport water for their households and livelihoods, which is a challenge for vulnerable members of the community, including the elderly and sick. 

In FY24, Hillside Aluminium invested R5.7 million to support the partnership, providing more than 10,000 people and 1,250 households in the KCD with reliable access to clean and safe water. The funding went towards the construction of boreholes and the installation of infrastructure, including seven handpumps, 36 water storage tanks, 17 standpipes (taps) and more than 9300 metres of water pipes.  

We continue to work with our local communities to support and understand water issues they may face, now and in the future.