Mining Companies Sow Karma Where It Is Needed Most


In the community of Santa Rosa de Osos, Colombia, 70 more people are now mobile, thanks to the generosity of Red Eagle Mining and the Lookout Ridge Wheelchair Foundation.

Laura Arboleda receives a wheelchair from Ian Slater (left) and Gordon Holmes (right)

Tears of joy pour from the mother of Laura Arboleda as the three-year-old girl is placed in the red wheelchair that she had just received, donated by Red Eagle Mining Corp. (RD:TSX.V). "This is a great help. Now she can progress," says her mother, moved by the unexpected generosity.

Manuel Salvador Uribe Patiņo, who suffers from osteoarthritis in his left leg, has a smile that illuminates the room as he throws down his home-made wooden crutches and gets into his wheelchair. "I have spent a year trapped in the house waiting for an operation. I am so happy; this is like a go-kart," he told Mining Journal.

Laura and Manuel are not the only ones to benefit from the generosity of Red Eagle Mining, a company that is building an underground gold mine in Santa Rosa de Osos, Antioquia, Colombia. Together with the Lookout Ridge Wheelchair Foundation of the U.S. and Canada, Red Eagle donated 70 wheelchairs to the community. "A principle of Red Eagle since its foundation has been returning benefit to the communities where we work. We have many projects on which we are working with Santa Rosa, and we are very happy that we can do this," said CEO Ian Slater during his speech at the presentation ceremony.

"A principle of Red Eagle since its foundation has been returning benefit to the communities."

The donation was the initiative of Gordon Holmes, the businessman behind Streetwise Reports and its publications such as The Gold Report, who has worked with the foundation for ten years, enlisting the support of some of the mining companies that his publications write about. To date, the foundation has donated more than 1 million wheelchairs in more than 100 countries around the world.

For Holmes, the initiative has a very personal root given that a once healthy member of his family became confined to a wheelchair after contracting multiple sclerosis, and he himself spent 18 months on crutches following an accident.

According to Holmes, supporting the communities where companies work generates good corporate karma for the donating companies, and it is a reward that doesn't take long to show itself. "In some parts of the world, people treat someone who cannot walk like a dog and their self-esteem falls. No one wants to be dependent on other people and this small action changes that. Lifting a child from a wheelbarrow and putting him or her in a wheelchair, you can see how it changes lives. When the kids start doing wheelies you know that they are happy and consider themselves normal, doing the same things that their friends are doing on their bicycles," he told Mining Journal.

"From Q4/16 Red Eagle Mining Corp. will start producing 5,000 oz a month of gold in dore comprising 57% silver and 43% gold."

The donation was welcomed by the public authorities of Santa Rosa given the scarce resources they have for such initiatives. "We have identified 550 people that need wheelchairs in the community but we lack the resources to obtain them. With the link with Red Eagle we have made a great achievement," Santa Rosa Health Secretary Carmenza Jaramillo told Mining Journal.

Mine Construction

Company managers were also smiling during a site visit as civil works contractor Consorcio San Ramon Proyecto Civil has started earthmoving works to prepare the San Ramon site for plant construction. In San Ramon, the air is full of sounds of the fleet of yellow machinery shifting earth, and very soon contractor STRACON GyM will start to excavate the portal for a 4.5 meter (4.5m) by 5m decline to access the ore body.

San Ramon earthworks

The San Ramon earth works. The portal will be started at the ellipse to the extreme left.

The decline will hit mineral after 300m and the main mineralized body after 1 kilometer, with exploitation due to commence in the third quarter of 2016. The beneficiation plant will comprise six column-in-leach tanks, a small flotation circuit and a concentrate regrind circuit. From the fourth quarter of 2016, Red Eagle will start producing 5,000 ounces a month of gold in dore comprising 57% silver and 43% gold.

Bob Bell and Ian Slater observe earth movements

Bob Bell (left) and Ian Slater (right) observe the earth movements at San Ramon.

"The equipment purchases and contracts are completed, the earthworks are progressing and very soon we will start pouring concrete. The steel for the concrete has arrived from Brazil and the most important concrete pours will occur before Christmas to put in the foundations for the mill, the leach tank, the filtration plant and the crusher," COO Bob Bell told Mining Journal.

Article courtesy of Mining Journal.

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