We are committed to maintaining strong working relationships with our workforce, suppliers, communities and stakeholders. Lucara recognizes that any mining project is finite, and therefore works to provide lasting, sustainable benefits in the communities where we live and work. In 2018, Lucara became a signatory to the United Nations Global Compact, cementing its commitment to implement, disclose and promote its human rights, labour, environment and anti-corruption principles.
Our commitments are set out in our Code of Business Conduct and Ethics (updated and approved March 2020), Responsible Mining Policy (approved February 2020), Corporate Social Responsibility (CSR) Charter (updated and approved February 2019), Occupational Health and Safety Policy (updated and approved February 2019) and our Human Resources Policy (updated and approved February 2019).
The Lucara Branch of the Botswana Mine Workers’ Union was established in 2018. By the end of 2019, 65 percent of our direct employees had joined the Union. Our main contractors have formed their own union branches to represent their workforce. In 2019 we held a training session for Union members on basic labour laws, negotiating skills, company policies and details of the Memorandum of Agreement. We provided the Union with an office in Letlhakane and supported members to attend conferences. We strive to maintain good working and workplace relationships.
Lucara’s contributions to the development of our local communities goes beyond the creation of jobs, generation of taxes and payment of royalties, we also invest in sustainable, community-driven projects and initiatives that advance our commitments under the SDGs.
UN GC Principles - Human Rights
Principle 1: Businesses should support and respect the protection of internationally proclaimed human rights; and
Principle 2: make sure that they are not complicit in human rights abuses.
UN GC Principles - Labour
Principle 3: Businesses should uphold the freedom of association and the effective recognition of the right to collective bargaining;
Principle 4: the elimination of all forms of forced and compulsory labour;
Principle 5: the effective abolition of child labour; and
Principle 6: the elimination of discrimination in respect of employment and occupation.
In 2019 we strengthened our Sustainability Department with the newly created positions of Sustainability Coordinator, Community Investment Officer and an Administrative Assistant. Along with the Community Liaison Officer, they manage and monitor stakeholder engagement, community relations and our community investment initiatives.
Karowe Village Initiative (KVI)
In 2018, we launched the Karowe Village Initiative (KVI), focussed on investing in and developing sustainable community-driven projects and initiatives. The Mokubilo Co-operative Society Farm, the first KVI project, was developed in partnership with Mokubio village. The farm is a community-owned, commercial farm designed to address malnutrition, provide affordable and locally available vegetables and protein, and create employment and training opportunities. In 2019, work began on the second KVI project, a fodder and small stock farm in Khwee. In 2020, Phase II of the Mokubilo farm will include additional infrastructure and an expansion and work will continue toward the development of the Khwee farm.
Health, Wellness and Well-being
Health and safety are paramount and one of our core values. Our health and safety programs, governed by our Occupational Health and Safety Policy, are entrenched in our workplace and workforce. Our key learnings are shared at Kgotla meetings, reinforcing our belief in safe and healthy workforce; safe and healthy communities.
Lucara Botswana’s Karowe Diamond Mine’s First Aid Team placed first in the 2019 Inter-Mine First Aid Competition.
In 2019, construction of an outdoor gym and public ablution block, both in Letlhakane, began. The outdoor gym was handed over to the village in February 2020. The ablution block will be completed this year.
The ground-breaking ceremony was held in February 2020 for a Sports Complex in Letlhakane.
We continue to support a number of initiatives that focus on the health, wellness and wellbeing of our communities.
Investing in the Future
We recognize the importance of investing in the future. In addition to providing training and personal development opportunities to our employees, we look for opportunities to invest in our communities. We do this through:
- Annual school awards program
- Mentorship programs in the local schools
- Internships at Karowe Diamond Mine