Lockdown Education Activities

Lockdown Education Activities

While the Covid-19 lockdown has certainly been an unexpected journey, it has provided an opportunity for team members to improve their knowledge and skills in line with best international practice and emerging trends in the built environment.

Solid Green has always been committed to upskilling its staff members, as we know that any new knowledge gained will benefit our company as a whole. During #lockdownSA our team attended courses, webinars and podcasts on the fundamental changes that are taking place around safeguarding public health in buildings; to further their interests related to climate resilience; and to improve their business-related skills.

The most-attended courses were:

  • Places matter to Microbial Interactions

    Hosted by the International WELL Building Institute (IWBI) – attended by Khosi, Adrie and Mbongiseni – which explored strategies to manage the spread of infectious disease in buildings and communities, in the context of the recent spread of COVID-19; and how buildings can also contribute to the strengthening of our immune systems.

  • EcoDistricts Accredited Professional Course

    Attended by Marloes (as a refresher), and Noma, Bronwyn, Jeffy, Khosi, Andi and Adrie who successfully took the exam – in preparation for Solid Green’s upcoming work on a methodology for creating EcoDistricts in the City of Johannesburg.

  • DesignBuilder

    Attended by Giant and Wayne who are studying Building Energy and Simulation online, mentored by Chilu.

  • Health and Well Being: Rethinking the Built Environment

    Hosted by the Green Building Council of Mauritius – attended by Zendre and Adrie, this cross-case discussion of 3 different frameworks was presented by Catriona Brady, Head of the World Green Building Council’s Better Places for People; Meelan Thondoo, Anthropologist, Socio-economic Analyst and PhD Candidate in the EU Commission EMJD Program; and Dr Shalini Ramesh, Director of the Commercial Team at the International WELL Building Institute.

It goes without saying that online learning related to health and the built environment took centre-stage. Jesse is currently undertaking the WELL AP Exam Preparation virtual series, with the intention of writing the exam by August. And Marloes ambitiously undertook, and was super inspired by, the Living Future Accreditation, which comprises 20 hours of Foundational Course webinars and then another 16 hours of other educational activities. She also listened to FutureCities podcasts on how Covid-19 is impacting our industry – particularly the podcasts hosted by Daniel Claassen with Giles Pendelton (Chief Development Officer at Attacq) and Henning Rasmus (Director at Paragon Architects).

A highlight for Marloes was the Living Future Unconference online: ‘Sustaining Hope within Crisis’ with an inspiring keynote address by Jason McLennon, Founder of the International Living Future Institute, titled ‘Community Resilience in Difficult Times’. Hosted by the International Living Future Institute (ILFI), this game-changing event was THE place for the global green building and sustainability community to come together.

Climate Crisis in the time of Covid-19 (attended by Zendre), was hosted by Daily Maverick journalist Rebecca Davis in conversation with Former Secretary-General of Amnesty International, Kumi Naidoo and Chair of The Elders and former President of Ireland, Mary Robinson. A learning from this talk was how democracy, human rights and sustainability are linked and how times of crisis should be used as a moment of learning and awareness around the problems (beyond Covid-19) that face our society.

Covid-19 and Real Estate: The Young Professional’s Outlook, attended by Noma, was hosted by the South African Institute of Black Property Practitioners (SAIBPP) and looked at how the professional environment has changed during the Covid-19 era, inspiring Noma to investigate opportunities for growth within her ambit.

Wayne and Alex both chose to focus on urban sustainability. A Udemy course on Aquaculture offered Wayne a better understand on how to keep fish in captivity for aquaponics systems and urban farming; while Alex researched urban crop management and Hydroponics in answer to a question sparked by the Covid-19 situation around how a household could survive from the land for 6 months to one year.

 Adrie attended a number of online events hosted by industry leaders including live discussions on Cities After COVID-19 hosted by The Big Rethink, such as How Public Transit Bounces Back; Housing: Room for Improvement; and Lessons for Greenfield Megaprojects; and webcasts by the International WELL Building Institute (IWBI) such as Places matter for human health; Places matter for stress and immunity; and Power of place: A conversation about racial inequities highlighted by Covid-19. Other events included the World Green Building Council on Indoor Air Quality, Lessons for the Future of Public Health, Circular Economy, and Net-Zero and Close to Zero Buildings – Africa Green Building Webinar Series; while the GBCSA Planet Shapers events covered Applying Net-Zero in Africa, and Greening a Property Portfolio.

Solid Green’s super-efficient office manager (and new mum) is planning to take a number of tests through the Chartered Institute of Management Accounting (CIMA); and also attended Are you ready to re-open? presented by Mike Miles from HR and Skills Market, and How to create a High Performance Culture in a New World of Work by Natalie Wickam from Quantum Workplace.

Overall, we’re impressed with the initiative shown by our team and look forward to finding out what new learning opportunities they are planning as lockdown progresses!

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