Our ESG policy commits us to:
At GREA, we believe in developing projects in a responsible manner, and we apply international Environmental, Social and Governance (“ESG”) standards across our entire project portfolio.
Our commitment to responsible development is set across our suite of policies that commit us to the highest standards for ESG management, including the UN Global Compact addressing human rights, labour standards, environment and anti-corruption. Our activities as a responsible corporate citizen are further aligned to the UN’s Sustainable Development Goals:
COMMITMENTS AT A GLANCE
At GREA we recognise that real estate development can have a significant positive or negative social and environmental impact. Our goal is to accentuate positive development impact and limit any potential negative outcomes.
Our sustainability objectives are codified in our ESG policy which compels us to integrate ESG issues into our investment process, implement ESG objectives across the company and keep the investment committee, board and stakeholders abreast of sustainability issues.
Although GREA’s sustainability policies are formulated and implemented through a top-down approach, its efficacy is embodied in each development project of the Company. In addition to in-depth impact assessment studies and engagement with local authorities and the community in which each development is located, GREA also consults extensively with its tenants on optimizing the environmental efficiency of each asset, based on client specification.
Project opportunity considerations, investment decisions and monitoring of the implementation of the projects are done in line with the Company’s ESG Policy. GREA is committed to working with like-minded development partners and, in so doing and as far as possible, disseminate the Company’s ESG approach to these partners. This includes the development of healthy buildings in line with best practice standards.
Independent certification is an important mechanism to ensure we remain at the leading edge of sustainable development in Africa. As such, The Precinct is the first development in Mauritius and the first commercial development in the Indian Ocean Islands region to have been awarded a 5-Star Green Star rating by the Green Business Council of South Africa. The Precinct furthermore holds the distinction of being the first EcoDistricts certified commercial node in Africa. See more at www.theprecinct.mu
In addition, all current developments are being constructed in line with IFC EDGE (“Excellence in Design for Greater Efficiencies”) standards, with a 20% saving in water, energy, and embodied energy in materials. We’re proud to share that our award-winning Rosslyn Grove and Eneo at Tatu Central in Kenya are already EDGE certified.
COMMUNITY ENGAGEMENT AND IMPACT ASSESSMENTS
Prior to commencing construction, GREA will engage extensively with local authorities and communities to understand and communicate the impact of the development. These engagements form part of a larger impact assessment study.
In addition to analyzing the environmental impact of a development, the study and community engagement seeks to identify the potential for new temporary and permanent jobs that will be generated through the development, potential job losses as a result of construction, possible impact on businesses and traffic flow in the node, as well as the relocation of existing businesses and support for new businesses complimentary to the node.
Emphasis is further placed on the procurement of goods and professional services from local manufacturers and suppliers as well as skills transfer.
Our ESG policy commits us to:
Our integrity and reputation for ethical practices are among our most valued assets and are essential aspects of our sustained profitability. Our Code of Ethics and Business Conduct (“the Code”) sets out the ethical behavior expected of everyone working at, or with, GREA.
Our approach is to maintain ethical standards in the conduct of our business and in our relations with whomever we associate – our colleagues, directors, shareholders, customers, associates and suppliers, as well as governments, the public and the media.
GREA further has detailed policies dealing with preventing and reporting Fraud and Corruption, Gifts and Hospitality. These policies provide all employees and stakeholders with additional details of GREA’s expectations, systems and procedures for each of these aspects, including:
Considering the recent worldwide Covid-19 pandemic, GREA focused on the most immediate needs of communities impacted by the virus. It is anticipated that as the severity of the pandemic subsides, the Company will reprioritize projects aligned to its identified sustainable development goals.
BUILT ENVIRONMENT SKILLS DEVELOPMENT FOR WOMEN IN KENYA
In November 2020, GREA announced its first development in Kenya with the construction of Rosslyn Grove, a 90-unit diplomatic apartment and town home community development in conjunction with Texas based Verdant Ventures.
To support the promotion of women in the built environment, GREA and Verdant Ventures donated US$40,000 to BuildHer Kenya (www.buildher.org). This will enable a cohort of 30 women to undergo an intensive 12-month programme focused on the systematic enhancement of their technical skills including carpentry and joinery, painting, and decorating. In addition, cohorts undergo further training in financial planning and life skills.
On completion of the skills curriculum, cohorts are placed at pre-approved employees for two to eight months of training in a live working environment (depending on the training area) BuildHer Kenya is a non-profit operation (“NPO”) founded in 2018 to equip disadvantaged women in Kenya with accredited construction skills and is the only female focused organization registered to sit for the prestigious National Industrial Training Authority exams.
Research has shown that after four months of training, cohorts report an increase in income of 520% onaverage. Employers report a 67% increase in productivity and 60% have changed their policies to incorporate gender, sexual harassment, and dignified pay.
As part of its long-term commitment to the empowerment of women in the construction sector, GREA is not only supporting the NPO by way of a monetary donation but is playing an instrumental role in onboarding its suppliers and contractors to provide cohorts with relevant on-the-job experience.
With the help of our partner Verdant Ventures and the American Chamber of Commerce in Kenya, GREA has been able to secure 1,000 vaccines through a donation of US$ 10,000, which were administered to all those working on the Rosslyn Grove project in Kenya. This has been made possible by a Kenya Private Sector Alliance (KEPSA) initiative to facilitate vaccination.
EXTENSION OF INTERNATIONAL PREPARATORY SCHOOL, MAURITIUS
GREA provided pro-bono Development Management services for the construction of an extension to the school. The extension serves to provide additional building facilities to the current students, whose classrooms were over capacity.
The project involved the construction of a new building on the land adjacent to the existing administration building, which is currently owned and operated by IPS. The new building comprises five classrooms, two specialist classrooms, a staff room with kitchenette, a nurse’s office, storeroom, server room, staff ablutions and two sets of student ablutions. There is also an external covered play area.
To enhance teaching and learning throughout the school, GREA together with Grit Real Estate Income Group Limited have also sponsored 104 iPads, 8 iMacs and 2 iPad charging lockers to the value of $30,000.
COVID-19 FOOD PACK SUPPORT IN UGANDA
As the world was ravished by Covid-19, GREA showed solidarity through the donation of 4 000 food packs across the country in collaboration with the Ugandan Ministry of Health and the Ruparelia Foundation.
SUPPORTING COMMUNITIES IN WHICH OUR DEVELOPMENTS RESIDE
Elevation Diplomatic Residence Project, together with GREA and its joint venture partner had actively participated in strengthening community relations over the last 2 years of involvement in Gulele sub city, Addis Ababa, Ethiopia. DH1 social involvement was mainly focused on bringing employment to the local community, infrastructure revamp including drainage system and roads, beautification of its nearby surroundings and investing in business opportunities for the youth.
Employment to the local community: Created 8 permanent jobs for the neighborhood youth including cleaning, security, general workers and around 82 other temporary jobs as skilled and unskilled manpower assisting during the construction phase.
GREA and its joint venture partner supported a group of approximately 20 youth by investing $10,000 to their small business and providing financial support as it was impacted by a slowdown in their day-to-day earnings from car parking and car washing activities as a result of the Elevation Diplomatic Residences development in Addis Ababa, Ethiopia.
They were further supported with the purchase of building materials for the construction of their car wash facility.
GREA is also passionate about supporting young African athletes that require financial assistance to progress into a world recognized athlete and make a career out of it. Surprise Mpanza aspiration was to become a surfer and GREA helped support his dream and today he is a young surfer achieving greatness in his chosen field of athletics.
We’re proud to also sponsor local surfing protégé, Brian Furcy with new wheels to get to the best breaks on the island as part of his training before returning to international competition.
GOOD HEALTH & WELL-BEING IN ETHIOPIA
GREA was approached by the office of the Federal Democratic Republic of Ethiopia who aimed to deploy 48,000 Rapid Response Teams (RRTs) to deal with the Covid-19 pandemic across the country. The RRTs responded to cases of actual or suspected community infection and in addition to medical activity (testing, and hospitalizing or isolating), and needed to ensure that case data (for tracing and case management) was recorded accurately and in a timely way.
GREA contributed US$10,000 towards this project which helped to enhance surveillance and management of the pandemic.
GOOD HEALTH & WELL-BEING IN MAURITIUS
During the start of the COVID-19 pandemic in Mauritius, the pharmaceutical industry had found themselves in a challenge, as the demand for hand sanitizers outweighed supply. To help, GREA together with Grit Real Estate Income Group Limited empowered and invested into a local company to make hand sanitizers. They have been able to produce 6500 hand sanitizers which were distributed along with essential food packs to the under privileged. GREA’s total investment for this initiative was US$20,000.