Launched in 2016, Geneva Projects & Supplies provides assistance and support to businesses and contractors to become legally compliant with construction regulations.
“Various reports have pointed to the high number of accidents in construction,” explains Kuypers. “A report by the Construction Industry Development Board says that construction continues to contribute to a disproportionate number of fatalities and injuries relative to other industrial sectors.
“For this reason, my aim is to enhance quality of life through the reduction of construction accidents, fatalities, illnesses, diseases, missed time from work, and workmen’s compensation claims,” she says.
Launching a business in the construction sector
Kuypers obtained a safety management diploma from Oxbridge Academy before working as a Safety Manager in the engineering and construction sector. She says launching a company in a predominantly male environment was a challenge.
“It required me to break barriers and prove that I can do whatever my male counterparts can. I overcame this hurdle through hard work, determination and self belief,” she says.
She was recently selected to participate in AccelerateHer, a three-month entrepreneurship programme that provided 25 female entrepreneurs with developmental workshops, high-impact business development support and mentoring from industry specialists and experienced entrepreneurs. Kuypers was chosen as the winner and received R50 000 in funding for her business.
“I’ve learnt that fear limits you and your vision. It serves as a blinder to what may be just a few steps down the road for you. The journey is valuable, but believing in your talents, your abilities and your self-worth can empower you to walk down an even brighter path,” she says.
With the R50 000 in grant funding, Kuypers plans to further empower herself by completing the necessary training and registering as a professional with The South African Council for Project and Construction Management Professions.
She is currently providing clients such as Services Seta, Afri-Tech and Corporate Vine with cost-effective and professional health and safety services, such as providing training on the use of first aid kits and fire equipment, increasing awareness on safety and fires, and assistance with compiling job and site-specific safety files.
“My long-term goal is be to one of the leading occupational health and safety training companies in the country and to empower more women to get involved in the sector,” she concludes.
Kuypers advice for entrepreneurs:
- Have a vision, face your fears and believe in yourself.
- Take a risk and start today!