UD Trucks SA intensifies its Ultimate Women Programme

UD Trucks Southern Africa has donated a 65-seater Croner PKE 280 bus to the Commercial Transport Academy.
UD Trucks Southern Africa has donated a 65-seater Croner PKE 280 bus to the Commercial Transport Academy.

To expand its Ultimate Women Programme, UD Trucks Southern Africa (UDTSA) has donated a new 65-seater Croner PKE 280 bus to the Commercial Transport Academy (CTA). The bus will be used for the training of female drivers as part of CTA’s Bus Driver Development Programme.

Owing to the success and enduring impact of its driver training programmes in the past two years, the first-ever Bus Driver Development Programme – a joint venture between the CTA, Southern African Bus Operators Association (SABOA), Clarendon Transport Underwriting Managers (CTU) and UDTSA – has been established. Approximately 30 female trainees will benefit directly from this life-changing initiative.

UDTSA’s Ultimate Women Programme was successfully launched in 2022 with its primary objective to drive gender transformation initiatives in the transport industry. As part of the programme, UDTSA sponsored two new Kuzer light-medium duty trucks to the CTA. After gaining extensive experience in the year-long programme, CTA was able to support all beneficiaries to secure employment as professional truck drivers, attesting to the continued commitment of UDTSA and CTA to cultivating meaningful change and transformation through empowerment of women in the transport industry.

The exclusive bus handover ceremony was hosted at UDTSA head office in Rosslyn, Pretoria on June 7, 2024. Among the key stakeholders who graced the event were local media; representatives of the new trainee group; Anesu Mawire, International Development Specialist, United States Agency for International Development (USAid); Jr Choeu, JR Choeu Express; Eric Motshwane, SABOA; Olivia Kumalo, operations manager, Hollard Trucking; Quinton Roos, MD Trucklogix; Nicci Scott, founder of Commercial Transport Academy; Filip Van den Heede, MD UD Trucks Southern Africa, and Janet Frost, human resources director, UD Trucks Southern Africa.

Nicci Scott, founder of CTA, weighs in on the newly developed programme: “We are pleased to have partnered with UDTSA in advancing the shared vision of increasing representation of female drivers in the transport industry and paving a way for an equitable society. The programme grew in leaps and bounds since its inception and we cannot thank UDTSA enough for the unwavering support and the lasting impact this has had in the lives of these young women. With the renewed focus on training bus drivers, we pledge to continue to work closely with all the key stakeholders that we have partnered with to ensure successful completion of the programme.”

During the Bus Driver Development Programme, the participants will undergo extensive training for a period of 12 months. This will cover technical modules such as vehicle operation and control, defensive driving techniques, traffic laws and regulations as well as route navigation or planning. Furthermore, the programme will also have a strong theoretical component, covering critical modules such as stress management, professionalism and effective passenger communication.

“Our meaningful partnership with CTA has been nothing short of transformative in our constant endeavour to empowering women in our industry and leaving a lasting imprint on societies within which we operate. Having been able to further expand the programme to training bus drivers, highlights the success of this worthy cause and our dedication to making Better Life for people, the planet and the logistics sector. We wish the new candidates a fruitful journey in the next coming months, and we are confident that they will go on to making a difference for a brighter future,” says Filip Van den Heede, MD of UDTSA.

UDTSA’s progressive steps in being a catalyst on the transformation agenda and investing in initiatives that contribute meaningfully to South Africa’s socio-economic transformation were recognised by naamsa (The Automotive Business Council) in October 2023 for spearheading Women and Youth Empowerment, and Most Improved BBBEE OEM. The naamsa awards are hailed as the most coveted awards in the automotive industry for recognising best-performing brands across the entire automotive value chain across various segments and categories.


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