Mercedes-Benz South Africa (MBSA), has a long-standing commitment to fighting HIV and Aids and promoting employee wellness, not only amongst its own workforce but also within communities linked to its business. In the drive to promoting healthier truck drivers and safer roads, Mercedes-Benz South Africa (MBSA) and its partner organisation Corridor Empowerment Project (CEP) continue to support fleet owners in truck driver health and wellness education.
The Fleet Owner Workplace Wellness Programme is an extension of the MBSA workplace wellness strategy that has been putting the company’s employees first for over a decade, adding to the automotive giant’s ability to achieve profitable growth and contribute to the socio-economic success of the country.
The aim of the programme is to assist fleet owners in taking a holistic approach to employee health and wellness, based on a proven model. As a provider of transport solutions to the freight industry, MBSA, through the wellness programme, is able to support fleet customers and their truck drivers with an additional benefit that will enhance their sustainability and profitability.
“South Africa’s trucking industry is at the economic heart of this country, pumping prosperity to our people. Healthy, skilled truck drivers are one of the key issues which we have chosen to wholeheartedly support as a corporate thought leader and responsible corporate citizen. As such, collaboration remains an important enabler for MBSA as we strive for the sustainability of the transport sector in South Africa, with employee wellbeing as a key contributor,” says Kobus van Zyl, Executive Director: Daimler Trucks & Buses Southern Africa.
“With our ongoing commitment to the sector, we live Daimler Trucks & Buses’ vision statement: ‘We want to be the benchmark commercial vehicle solutions provider that makes a real difference in the lives of our stakeholders’,” adds Van Zyl.
Through its corporate social responsibility programme, MBSA has earnestly supported the Trucking Wellness project since inception in 2009. Trucking Wellness is an initiative of the National Bargaining Council of the Road Freight and Logistics Industry (NBCRFLI) which provides an education and basic health care service to truck drivers along the major freight routes in southern Africa. This includes dissemination of information, testing and treatment of HIV and AIDS and other lifestyle illnesses.
Programme objectives include:
- To reduce the impact / losses due to disease and ill health on MBSA fleet owner businesses.
- To increase understanding of HIV and AIDS amongst MBSA fleet owner businesses.
- To increase capacity to prevent and manage disease, HIV and AIDS amongst MBSA fleet owners.
- To impact positively on health, life expectancy and job retention by employees, especially truck drivers.
- To increase knowledge of health and wellness through the dissemination of health information, education and screening to all participating fleet owner employees.
- To increase value-add to MBSA fleet customers.
MBSA also provides its commercial vehicle customer base with dedicated driver training programmes that equip truckers with product knowledge to enhance safety and reduce cost of vehicle ownership. The value add for MBSA clients does not end there, however, with products such as the FleetBoard telematics systems and Charterway fleet management services further reducing downtime of fleet vehicles.
Kelrn Vervoer, a logistics solutions provider with a nationwide footprint, is the latest addition to the Workplace Wellness lineage. With the start of implementation of the Workplace Wellness Programme at Kelrn dating back to April 2015, Kelrn successfully launched their Workplace Wellness Programme on 31 May 2016. The programme will continue to run smoothly for the benefit of Kelrn Vervoer’s employees with ongoing support from MBSA and CEP.
Kelrn Vervoer’s commitment to ensuring the health and wellness of its employees, particularly its drivers, is substantial. Kenne de Kock, CEO of Kelrn, enthused: “At Kelrn, we are aware of the value of good drivers as well as employees in good health. We care about the health and well-being of our personnel and are grateful to be a part of the Fleet Owner Workplace Wellness Programme with MBSA. This has certainly proven to us that MBSA is one of the few manufacturers who not only cares about business but also truly cares about the well-being of their customers and stakeholders; especially that of long-distance truck drivers. This includes road safety as well. We applaud MBSA for playing their part within the road freight and logistics industry in South Africa.”
To date, four MBSA Fleet Owner Workplace Wellness Programmes, with Kelrn Vervoer being the fifth, have been successfully implemented at Aspen Logistics, United Bulk, Bakers Transport and City Couriers and continue to be supported. The fleet owners participating in the wellness programmes receive regular updated health information which can be shared with employees; bi-annual consultations on the refinement of their programmes; health skills training workshops; and support with Wellness / HIV Workplace Policy development.
The programme provides fleet owners with the opportunity to develop and implement a customised Workplace Wellness Programme that could minimise the risk of disease / HIV and Aids on their respective business’ bottom line. For more information, visit https://www.mercedes-benzsa.co.za/sustainable-development/corporate-social-responsibility/hiv-aids/ and https://www.truckingwellness.co.za/.