Mangaung Correctional Centre is a correctional facility housing approximately 3000 male maximum security classification inmates. It is a G4S Care & Justice Services operated centre, with a staffing component of approximately 500 employees. The centre’s staffing component consists of both males and females and it addresses the population demographics of the community within which it is situated.

Ipo Maja is the Director: Inmate Care & Empowerment and has recently been promoted from her previous role as the Manager: Programme Delivery. She has a number of managers reporting to her and they include the Education Manager, Skills Development Manager, Religious Care & Community Outreach Manager, Programme Development and Assessment Centre Section Head. Ipo Maja is also responsible for Social Workers, Psychologists, Librarian staff, Gym Sports and recreation Officers. All the managers are qualified individuals who perform their duties with a sense of responsibility and commitment.

Psychologists, Social Workers, and Librarian are the specialists whose main function is to deliver programmes and interventions aimed at developing and empowering inmates to become accountable and responsible citizens upon their release back into society.

Ipo mentioned that performing quality assurance functions on managers as well as managing and co-ordinating all interventions can be a very challenging experience in that all these departments within inmate care & empowerment should be able to deliver a responsible and empowered and developed citizen back into the community.

Ipo says it is on this level where she is expected to ensure that the Company meets its budgetary and contractual expectations. “On a Director level, one has to be able to infuse both the delivery of services with the business side of the organisation very well.

Ipo completed her matric at Kroonstad, a small town in the Free State, where she grew up. She was fortunate to have parents who were willing to give her the opportunity to study B.A. Social Work (Hons.) at, the then, University of Zululand.

She started working as a Social Worker with the Department of Welfare in 1991 (now called Department of Social Development) and moved through the ranks within the Department. She was a Probation Officer, which involved writing pre-sentence reports for the courts. Accurate and professional sourcing of information was very crucial in this position. The report would form part of the many instruments that the court would use to decide on the accused person’s sentence. When the Free State National Prosecuting Authority wanted to pilot the specialised Sexual Offences Court in 1999, they identified a need to have permanent social worker at that court. Ipo was then moved to Sexual Offences Court as a co-ordinator of Social Work services. In her co-ordination role, she worked with the then Child Protection Unit of the South Africa Police Services, the Department of Correctional Services, Justice Department, Child Welfare Organizations. The latter experiences diversified her Social Work knowledge and equipped her for her current work at G4S.

Ipo is enthused by the challenges in her role and she stated that, “Managing the complex process of assessments and programme delivery makes the adrenaline rush in my body very exciting. In order to fully understand the rationale behind therapists’ decisions, I am challenged to develop myself even further.”

Ipo has taken the opportunity to develop herself with the Company and has shown that she has committed herself fully to the company and its cause. She is managing an array of professionals on a daily basis and is driving change in the lives of many offenders on daily basis. She doesn’t shy away from tasks and her commitment is exemplary.

Ipo would recommend G4S as an employer as she believes that, “G4S is a company where ordinary people do extraordinary things with good leadership and management. I would undoubtedly recommend anyone with ambition and looking to build their careers to join G4S.”