From the news desk

Kenilworth Centre launches iconic rooftop farm

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By: Aneeqa du Plessis

The excitement was palpable at the Kenilworth Centre shopping mall where Redefine Properties unveiled the first retail urban rooftop farm in the province. The aim of the unique farm is to inspire purpose in disadvantaged persons in a sustainable way. It also intends to empower unemployed youth in the surrounds.

“Our aim is to create a meaningful and sustainable long-term solution to tackle youth unemployment and in turn food security in our immediate catchment area. We believe this project will set an example for how landlords can change the way retail properties are managed and developed so that lives, communities, and the environment are impacted positively,” explained Anelisa Keke, Chief sustainability officer at Redefine.

The project will include a skills development programme that educates youth on how to develop an agricultural business in an urban environment, through a partnership with Mr Price Foundation’s HandPicked programme, it’s training partner SA Urban Food & Farming Trust/Oranjezicht City Farm and the Black City Farm Project based in Langa.

Cape Town Mayor Geordin Hill-Lewis who was in attendance congratulated all stakeholders who formed part of the extraordinary unveiling.

“I really hope that we see the replication of projects like this across our city so that we may enable continuous economic inclusion to citizens that may not have been able to previously,” said Hill-Lewis.

Project beneficiaries will be sourced from the Langa community. The Redefine plans to donate fresh produce to two or three local NGOs each month, or a minimum of 10 per year. Mall restaurants will also be able to purchase fresh produce directly from the farm saving costs.

Mayoral Committee Member for Economic Growth, James Vos said the farm acts as a glimmer of hope to those who are trapped in poverty.

“Today we brought people, places, and possibilities together and this inspires the rest of the city to create innovative ideas that will bolster our economy and allow the destitute a better opportunity,” added Vos.


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