Women in construction

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					                                  Women in construction
Not so long ago it would have been unheard of for women to be in         of our ladies For this first issue June July we are concentrating
construction running building sites designing measuring safety           on engineers estimating assistants and safety officers In the next
control and programming                                                  issue August September we will highlight careers in construction
 Senior male oriented WBHO Construction managers are                     support such as company secretary accountants and quality
undergoing a paradigm shift taking off their blinkers and                assurance etc and finally in the October November issue we will
beginning to realise that women can and do play as important             spotlight quantity surveyors and buyers
a role as men in our business of construction says Mike Wylie            As you can see it s an industry of great opportunity
chairman of WBHO Construction Over the next three issues of

Building Women magazine we will be introducing you to some               We hope you enjoy the series

                                            Jessica Babulal estimating assistant tendering department

                                                                          What is your position and what does it entail
                                                                          My job description is an estimating assistant and that entails
                                                                          compiling tender documents There are various stages of putting
                                                                          the tender together and I need to ensure timeous submission

                                                                          What do you love most about your job
                                                                          The people with whom I work and liaise I also enjoy the fast
                                                                          pace of the construction industry especially within the tendering

                                                                          Since the industry is still male dominated do you
                                                                          encounter any challenges
                                                                          Definitely but I am lucky to be working for a company that
                                                                          recognises each individual s ability irrespective of race or gender

Tell us about your career with WBHO                                       Would you encourage other women to join the industry
I joined WBHO in 2000 and have since gained tremendous                    Yes Women especially in SA have come a long way to be
experience within the construction industry I have worked with            recognised in the corporate world The construction industry was
very skilled people in their respective fields and they have been         initially male dominated but we have proven that we are just as
generous in passing some of their knowledge on to me                      skilled as our male counterparts

                       Yolanda Ngwena supervisor quality control department
Instead of wearing a swimsuit Yolanda chose to wear a hard hat She was employed by
WBHO two and a half years ago after completing her diploma at the Cape Peninsula
University of Technology CPUT with exceptional results She has worked her way up
to a supervisory position heading the quality control department of the Icon building on
Hans Strydom Boulevard Her position requires that she deals with all 12 engineers from
the different departments to ensure adherance to quality The four tower
R200 million site is the first BEE financed project of its size in Cape Town Yolanda is also
in charge of snag items in the neighboring North Wharf complex This entails working
with sub contractors and senior management as well as making sure that security is
upheld Yolanda says that WBHO has given her the opportunity to prove herself and she
wishes to thank the site manager for his support and caring
                                             Karin Jansen van Rensburg site engineer WBHO Roads and Earthworks
                                                                             Some of my duties include
                                                                                overseeing the work on site
                                                                                materials procurement
                                                                                quantifying work that has been completed by WBHO
                                                                                helping with the payment certificates at the end of the

                                                                             What do you love most about your job
                                                                             Everything but if I had to choose it would be working with
                                                                             people and being part of the team It is great to see how your work
                                                                             transforms into a visible end product

                                                                             Since the industry is still male dominated do you
                                                                             encounter any challenges
                                                                             I would have to say that my biggest challenges to date haven t
    Tell us about your career with WBHO                                      really been gender related but rather had to do with a language
    I work for WBHO Roads and Earthworks I joined the company in             barrier with the workers on site This was my first site and I was
    September 2005 after working for a year and a half at a consulting       fortunate to be part of a fantastic team that was willing to resolve
    firm I completed a BSc Civil Engineering at the University of            any communication issues
    Pretoria in 2003
                                                                             Would you encourage other women to join the industry
    What is your position and what does it entail                            Yes I think construction is a career that makes you feel like you
    I am currently the site engineer on the Breakwater Bay Eco Estate        have made a difference as you can see the results of your labour
    site in George where construction is almost complete I will be           It is long hours and hard work but the job satisfaction is great I
    transferring to another site soon                                        would recommend it to anyone

                                                  Nwabisa Jan at Palgrave is checking to see that the bracing is tied properly
                                                  She left WBHO and worked for the Department of Health for a week
                                                  during a year s experiential training arranged by her technikon She called us
                                                  at that time and asked if she could come back as she was very bored It is
                                                  compulsory for all students to undergo a year of experiential training with the
                                                  Department of Health after completing their diploma Nwabisa really enjoys
                                                  working in the construction industry

                                                                                        Nandipha Cukula with three months
                                                                                        experience ensuring that all employees know
                                                                                        how to use a harness Note the attention
                                              Felicia Nolukholojibji at
                                                                                        shown by the employees
                                              Life Style Extension has
                                              11 months experience
                                              She spends most of her
                                              time on site making sure
                                              things are going smoothly
                                              Here she is seen helping a
                                              contractor to rectify the
                                              scaffold Felicia has handled

                                              two contracts extremely
National Construction Week 27 July                                                             03 August 2006

Get involved Create an Industry that Is Rocking Hip                 depend on your cooperation involvement and participation in
and Happening                                                       hosting hundreds of construction related events countrywide

For many years the South African construction sector has            This campaign is aimed at attracting young learners to
been plagued by a tarnished and unappealing image                   participate in National Construction Week and ultimately to
ultimately confirmed by the exodus of skilled built environment     attract them to an exciting and vibrant industry a promising
professionals and the inability to promote the construction         career destination of choice I however wish to reiterate that
sector as a first choice career destination to the youth            as a sector you have a long term responsibility to meet the
                                                                    demand created by NCW by availing leamerships bursaries
If we are going to be able to execute the massive work as           and work placements
required and expected of us during the next few years it is
time that we come together in a united front to transform the       An NCW website www ncw06 org za went live on 1 February
sector from being Dirty Dark and Dangerous into an industry         2006 together with a dedicated share call help line 0860 000
that is Hip and Happening for existing professionals                629   The website and call centre will become the central
contractors builders tradesmen and young learners                   information and communication hubs for parties wishing to
interested in entering the sector                                   find out the following

The Department of Public Works has therefore initiated an                  Guidelines on how to host and register events
awareness campaign called Nabonal Construction Week                        Find out where events will be held in your area
 NCW to promote the profile and image of the sector in an                  Information relating to careers in the built
effort to attract new entrants into the sector and retain current          environment and construction sector
key players in the varying disciplines of the construction sector          Latest news and updates on National Construction
                                                                           Week 2006
The following few months will serve as the build up to a                   NCW promotional material and NCW support
weektong celebration of the construction sector from 27 July to
3 August 2006 In cooperation with the industry we envisage          I look forward to National Construction Week 2006 as I believe
using construction ambassadors as role models for young             that it is a major step towards addressing Imminent skills
people organizing site visits for the youth to interesting          shortages and I hope that we will all be pleasantly surprised by
construction projects accommodating visits to professional          the amount of initiatives that will be hosted during this period
offices and hosting construction related competitions and           So get involved and create an industry that is Rocking Hip
events                                                              and Happening

The weeklong nationwide awareness campaign will promote
the image and profile of the construction sector so as to give
young learners the opportunity to experience a wide range of
exciting opportunities available in today s built environment
and construction sector

The success of NCW
                                                                    Ms Stella Sigcau MP
As a Department we have embarked on an extensive                    Minister of Public Works
advertising and public relations campaign towards attracting
skills to the built environment I am looking to you the South
African Construction Industry to support us in this endeavour        Website www ncw06 org za   Call Centre 0860 000 629
as the success of National Construction Week will greatly              Fax 012 323 7017      E mail info@ncw06 org za
                                         Segametsi Lorraine Smous trainee engineer

                                                                       off quantities to prepare for day works payment certificates and
                                                                       administration duties like document control

                                                                       Who are your role models and mentors
                                                                       I look up to women who work hard to achieve their goals and
                                                                       I enjoy being around friends who are ambitious and have their
                                                                       priorities straight I entered the industry blindly not having any
                                                                       role model or mentor in the construction field but I am now lucky
                                                                       enough to have colleagues on whom I can rely

                                                                       Since the industry is still male dominated do you
                                                                       encounter any challenges
                                                                       Harassment and discrimination still exist but things are gradually
Tell us about your career withWBHO                                     changing Our male colleagues are slowly accepting that women
I joined the company in October 2005 as a trainee engineer Every       are capable and I look forward to the day when women will be
four months I have the opportunity to work in a different field I      appreciated for their skills and when gender will no longer be an
started in quality assurance where I conducted site inspections        issue
and organised lab tests on the layer works concrete works and
services Presently I am working on the Echo Apron Development          Would you encourage other women to join the industry
project at the Johannesburg International Airport which involves       Yes this industry is so fulfilling I feel so content when I look at a
the extension of aprons office buildings and infrastructure            project I have completed The rewards are tangible and worth more
development in preparation for the 2010 Soccer World Cup My            than pure financial remuneration It does however take hard work
responsibilities include quantity surveying functions such as taking   dedication and a lot of sacrifice

                                           Zimasa Magadia at Icon examining the temporary stairway and checking to see
                                           whether the inspections register is filled in correctly She is currently a student
                                           but enjoys working in the construction industry Her BTech studies will be based
                                           on construction especially research and risk assessment as she is specialising in
                                           occupational health and safety

                                                                               Isherene Fredericks at Icon has a total of four

                                                                               months experience She has a talent for educating
                                                                               workers and demonstrating the way things
                                                                               should be done always ensuring that people fully
                                                                               understand her She was trained by Koleka Isherene
                                                                               leamt to be talkative in order to get the message
                                                                               across clearly and this skill allows her to assist in
                                                                               improving safety on site Here she is seen explaining
                                                                               the correct way to wear goggles Her approach is
                                                                               centred on teaching people to pay attention to the
                                                                               situation or circumstances


 People always ask me why I like working with women It s simple        Koleka who is currently on maternity leave it is clear to see that
                                                                       they understand the working operations within our industry and
be the same at work They care about the safety of the people and       will become experts in the field of occupational health and safety in
do not want to see anyone getting injured They are very strong         construction Don t underestimate these women They leam very
and men listen to them If we take a look at some of the ladies         quickly Safety is a very responsible job and is always a priority
mentioned who have almost two years experience Phmneza and             comments WBHO s Ayanda Ranelo BW