After seeing the work of one student who has produced a robotic machine that can draw and cut clothes for the speed-up of apparel production, Storm Diamonds contacted the NUL Innovation Hub and offered to donate and fund this student’s project.
On the 6th November, 2021, Storm Diamonds visited the National University of Lesotho to donate a whopping M70, 000 towards a NUL student’s innovation of a robotic machine. This donation is intended to help the inventor of the machine, Thapelo Moeti, to commercialise it and bring the machine to a point where it will cut clothes using laser technology. When the machine is up and running, designers will bring their work and the machine designed by Mr. Moeti will cut the clothes in higher quantities.
When accepting the donation, the Pro-Vice-Chancellor, Professor Kananelo Mosito thanked Storm Diamonds and indicated that it is heart-warming to see private sector recognising the importance of education and innovation. Prof. Mosito further appealed to the Private sector at large to follow what Storm has done by supporting innovations at NUL.
“We wish other private sector entities to elevate their Corporate Social Responsibility policies and we appeal to you to please come in and emulate Storm Diamonds by supporting educational initiatives that promote development and income generation”, Professor Mosito appealed.
He concluded his remarks by emphasising that since Storm Diamonds has started, perhaps more sponsors and funders will come and donate more in education.
The machine was developed by Thapelo Moeti under the supervision of Dr Naleli Matjelo in the Department of Physics and Electronics, Faculty of Science and Technology. It took Moeti and his supervisor almost four years to its completion. Moeti just graduated with the 2020/2021 Class in October this year.
When handing over the donation Mrs. ‘Malehlohonolo Mojaki, Sustainable Manager from Storm Diamonds indicated that as a team, they reviewed their CSI policy and discussed about initiatives that need to be taken to ensure that the CSI is sustainable. They realised that the greatest resource is the human capital of this country. The aim, when giving back to the community is to make sure that the children of this country are at the end of the day able to create jobs and employment, when the mine closes.
“It is the first time that Storm Diamonds supports educational initiatives at NUL. We recognised the NUL Innovation Hub and saw Thapelo Moeti’s work/project and then decided as a team from Storm Diamonds that these innovations and projects need to be celebrated and funded”, Mrs Mojaki indicated.
When showing gratitude, Moeti thanked God, the school (NUL) and Storm Diamonds.
“This machine will be 10 times faster than humans, and will have a capacity to cut clothes, steel, and wood based on computer drawings it has drawn. I thought this was just a simple project until the moment Dr. Thamae was encouraging and assuring me that this is not just a project but a big one”, he said.
Established in November 2018, the NUL Innovation Hub is an optimistic endeavour of NUL that aspires to convert the text-book and laboratory based knowledge and raw ideas into successful start-ups and blooming businesses. It prepares the crude business ideas to face the uncompromising challenges of the real marketplace so that they don’t crash under the ruthlessness of their competitive territory.