It was all smiles for hundreds of disadvantaged learners at Mikateka Primary School on a chilly Tuesday June 14 morning when the City and leading fleet management company delivered more than 2 100 pairs of school shoes worth R230 000.
Mikateka is a no-fee school in Ivory Park, near Midrand, in the City of Johannesburg’s Region A. Most of the learners at the school are orphans, come from child–headed homes or have unemployed parents.
Speaking during the handover, Johannesburg Executive Mayor Cllr Parks Tau said the contribution would go a long way to restoring the dignity of the children, brightening their days and transforming their lives.
“As government, our intention is to ensure that our children succeed in their education. However, the government cannot do this alone,” he said, thanking Avis Fleet Management Services for its contribution.
The donation was part of Avis’s corporate social investment (CSI) programme to uplift the underprivileged women and children. The programme also speaks to the City’s Growth and Development Strategy 2040 (GDS 2040), which seeks to empower the underprivileged and create job opportunities. Both the City and Avis also handed over a cheque for R172 000 to Phindile Dlamini, Manager of Tebogo Home for mentally handicapped children in Orange Farm in Region G.
Tebogo Home is home to 35 disabled boys and girls. The donation has come in handy as it will help it buy a generator, four gas heaters, four desktop computers, a washing machine and 15 hospital beds, among other things.
Both parties also gave bursaries to two students studying towards a B Com degree in transport logistics, and supply chain management. The bursaries cover monthly transport costs, food and book allowances, and residence fees.
Speaking at the same ceremony, the City’s Member of the Mayoral Committee for Corporate and Shared Services, Cllr Mally Mokoena, said it was fitting that these contributions were made on the eve of the 40th anniversary of the June 16 1976 Soweto uprising, the day thousands of youths took to the streets to demand better education.
“It’s evident that we can only transform our country through education ... Education is a right but it is up to each and every one of you to use it for the benefit of yourselves, the community and the county,” she said.
She said the donations were the fruits of a long-term partnership with Avis. Avis Chief Executive Albert Geldenhuys said the decision to focus its CSI initiatives on education and uplifting disadvantaged women and children was a deliberate one.