On September 7, Afrox’s commitment to assisting young South Africans to acquire welding skills and knowledge culminated in the official opening of the LIV Welding Academy, a custom container welding school that was developed by Afrox in partnership with LIV and the Southern African Institute of Welding (SAIW).

AFROX SAIW LIV AcademyIn addition to assisting in the development of the LIV Welding Academy, Afrox is providing welding equipment, consumables and gases, and trained instructors. Furthermore, Afrox has obtained CHIETA (Chemical Industries Education & Training Authority) and QCTO (Quality Control for Trades and Occupations) accreditation for the training programmes.

Johann Pieterse, business manager for manufacturing industries at Afrox, says that the gases and welding company is very proud to be in partnership with such a worthwhile community project and that the Afrox welding training programmes will be the first to receive QCTO accreditation. “We have selected our inaugural 12 students for the LIV Welding Academy programmes and they began their training in October. They will be the first students to obtain a welding qualification with QCTO accreditation,” says Pieterse.

He explains that there is an ongoing demand for qualified welders in South Africa and that Afrox’s aim is not to just train welders but also to give the LIV Welding Academy students a recognised South African and international qualification. Pieterse adds that Afrox also intends to certify the LIV Welding Academy as an International Institute of Welding (IIW) authorised training body in partnership with the SAIW who run the programme in South Africa on behalf of the International Institute of Welding.

LIV Village aims to provide holistic residential care for orphaned and vulnerable children with the objective of nurturing and educating the children to become valuable members of society. The LIV Welding Academy project follows on from the success of Afrox’s POPUP welding facility in Soshanguve, which supports various technical up-skilling programmes with an emphasis on welding as an in-demand route to a sustainable career. This first-class tertiary welding facility was launched in 2016 and provides quality training focused on skills development that will contribute to a formal qualification.

Pieterse says that Afrox is not only generating new knowledge that will broadly benefit the welding sector, but is also demonstrating a practical response to enhancing the skills levels of welding teachers by offering five welding process training programmes. Afrox has already trained over 40 teachers and provided safety training to 13 000 people in the mining, transport, fabrication, petrochemical and energy sectors.
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Peter Middleton
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