September 2021.

Community members of Thornhill, in Kouga Local Municipal area, now have easy access to internet connectivity, as well as business and printing services, without having to travel a long distance.

This relaunched internet café, now being run out of a business container and funded as part of Jeffreys Bay Wind Farm’s development programme, is meant to not only provide a helping hand to a fledgling enterprise, but also to connect members of this rural community.

Owned and run by Thornhill community-member Chris Beki, this Black Youth-Owned SMME, has been able to relocate his business from a backyard room to a fully fitted container structure that is more suitable and easier to access for the community. This has also meant that he can now provide local work and has plans to eventually be able to employ five people.

“The company has been operating from a room with limited space and inadequate electrical facilities for computers and other business office equipment. Hence, I am really pleased to have a fully-fitted container-business, to render our internet Café services and even employ someone,” said Mr Beki, owner of BT Safestrip, who is also receiving business training and support.

The fully fitted container structure serves as an office, shop front and internet café, offering the following services to the community: Business readiness support to new and operational businesses (business registration, tax assistance, business plans/profiles/logos/email/CSD); Graphic design and corporate branding (banners, uniforms, vehicles and building branding).

“Our aim is to help grow this young enterprise into a sustainable business whilst helping the community to access services without travelling long distances, which is costly” explained Tsholofelo Moote, Economic Development Practitioner for Jeffreys Bay Wind Farm.

Moote added, “The community of Thornhill will be able to access services such as business registration as well as being able to apply for jobs and other essential services that facilitate access to economic opportunities”.