Forevermark is dedicated to encouraging the growth, prosperity and strength of communities in the diamond-producing countries we work in.
We do this by investing in education and in sustainable businesses. Forevermark, as part of the De Beers Group, supports initiatives which encourage the creation of economic independence and employment opportunities, particularly for women.
One of these schemes is Zimele. Launched in 2009 in South Africa, ‘Zimele’ means to ‘stand on your own feet’ or ‘be independent.’ The fund helps people to start or grow their own businesses through funding and mentorship.
Mercy Sithagu is one of the people who the fund has helped on her path to running her own thriving business.
Mercy runs Sithagu Farm in the small village of Nwanedi in South Africa's Limpopo Province, where she produces tomatoes, butternut squash and watermelons.
Mercy has successfully developed the farm, purchasing new material and investing in an irrigation system. Zimele helped preserve five jobs, and created an additional five permanent positions and around ten temporary jobs during the harvesting of tomatoes.
Mercy has won several recognitions for her professional achievements, including ‘Female Farmer of the Year' by the local Musina Municipality.
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