Friday, 2 September 2016

Welcome to Golden Star in the Community!

Welcome to the Golden Star Resources Corporate Social Responsibility (CSR) blog! Golden Star is a gold mining company that has been producing gold in Ghana for 15 years. We have two producing mines, Wassa and Bogoso/Prestea, and during our history we have produced over 4 million ounces of gold.

However mining and producing gold isn't the only element of our work in Ghana.  Golden Star has a dedicated CSR team based at its Wassa and Bogoso/Prestea mines. The team's focus is to ensure that Golden Star achieves its objective to be a responsible corporate citizen.

'Golden Star in the Community' will give a monthly insight into the CSR work supported by Golden Star and undertaken by our team.  

What do we believe?

Golden Star Oil Palm Plantation (GSOPP)
Golden Star is committed to being a part of the community in which we operate. We will achieve this by maintaining and building strong relationships with members of the local community, based on mutual respect and recognition of each other’s rights. We engage in active partnerships to support sustained betterment and local economic development. We support the protection of international human rights within our sphere of influence.

As a team, we value and are committed to safety and employee wellbeing. We believe that job-related injuries and illnesses are unacceptable. In fact, the Wassa team have won the National Safety and First Aid Competition for three consecutive years, beating teams from some of the much larger Ghanaian mines! We are committed to meeting or surpassing regulatory requirements in all of our activities, while safeguarding the local environment for our stakeholder communities and future generations.

To support our CSR programmes, we have committed US$1 per ounce of gold produced and 0.1% of pre-tax profit to the Golden Star Development Foundation and a further US$1 per ounce of gold produced to the Golden Star Oil Palm Plantation (GSOPP). Check out the blog for further stories on these initiatives in future months.

Who are our team?

Some of our geologists at work
Golden Star and our contractors employ 3,600 people, of which 99% are Ghanaian, 74% are from the region in which our operations are located and 59% are from our immediate host communities.  When we talk about our host communities, many of us are talking about our own families and friends. We have a vested interest in making our activities as sustainable as possible.

Within our workforce we have people who are trained and qualified in specialist disciplines to guide us in our CSR endeavours, such as engineers and scientists in environment, social and cultural studies and health and safety to name a few. Here are just a few members of our team and some brief information about them: 

Rebecca Appoiah, Community Relations Officer

"As a native of Akyempim, a village close to the Wassa mine, I had the opportunity to do my National Service with Golden Star in 2009.  The Company employed me formally as a Community Relations Officer in 2010 and with the love I had developed for the job, I was able to assist in a lot of community projects (health facilities, portable drinking water, community centres, skill training programmes, schools and houses for teachers, good access roads, electrification projects, etc.).  This work helped to ensure peaceful co-existence with catchment communities as well as educating the communities on what Golden Star's CSR commitment means.  I am proud to be part of a company that is bringing development to my community and other surrounding villages - the improvements I've seen over the past few years have made a big difference to local people."

Samuel Ebenezer Cudjoe, Field Rehabilitation Officer

"I was born and grew up in Prestea, a catchment community of the Bogoso/Prestea mine.  I joined Golden Star in 2007 after completing three internships with the Company as part of my degree.  My job is as a Field Rehabilitation Officer, which involves rehabilitation planning and post closure monitoring of open pits, waste rock dumps and other mine infrastructure.  As a resident of Prestea and a Golden Star employee, I've seen how Golden Star's CSR programme has evolved over the years.  There has been a steadily continuous improvement in the Company's activities in Prestea - it's not just about managing and avoiding risk, but instead it's about creating opportunities and ensuring sustainable improvement for the communities."

Bernard Boah, Safety Officer

"I was born and grew up in Dumasi, a catchment community close

to the Bogoso/Prestea mine. I have been with Golden Star since 2005 when I started my National Service. I worked in the Plant Maintenance department for two years and I learnt a lot. Even though I was a labourer, I was given training as a Mechanic Apprentice as part of the Company's training and development programme and that helped me to gain promotions. Golden Star also organized for me to go through a number of Occupational Health and Safety courses, which were run by NOSA, a South African company, and other major career development courses. I was promoted to Safety Officer in 2010 and I love my work. A typical day for me involves meeting the crew (during the pre-shift meeting) and meeting management to discuss safety issues concerning employees and our work environment. I enjoy interacting with people about safe working practices and making Golden Star a pleasant and safe place to work."

Francis Tachie, Community Relations Officer

"I am a native of Ateiku (born and bred!), a catchment community close to the Wassa mine. I joined Golden Star in 2008 as part of my National Service and then I gained the position of Community Relations Officer. My role is to help with the engagement between the Company and its stakeholders, especially

host communities, including Village Chiefs, opinion leaders, NGOs, District Assemblies etc.  I also have responsibility to help ensure a peaceful co-existence between the Company and the community, by way of resolving complaints from local people.  I am very proud to be a member of Golden Star's CSR team and I'm particularly keen to ensure that local young people keep getting the opportunity to learn new skills and gain employment with the Company."

What is coming up on 'Golden Star in the Community'?

Next month we will celebrate the 10th Anniversary of GSOPP! Arguably one of Golden Star’s most well-known community development initiatives, the multi-award winning social enterprise initiative is coming of age!

Check out the October blog post to meet some of the collaborators behind the enterprise concept and those who moulded its development along the way.  Meet the small-holder farmers, plantation workers, and others benefiting from this large scale, not-for-profit business, and hear about the future growth plans of the GSOPP Board and supporting partners.

If you'd like to find out more about Golden Star and its approach to CSR, please visit www.gsr.com/responsibility.



1 comment:

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