Johannesburg – November 2015: For the fourth consecutive year, Steyn City is ‘Delivering happiness to Diepsloot’ and this year set out to be even bigger and better than the last. Reaching in excess of 9000 primary school children in Diepsloot, the annual CSI project continues to bring cheer and joy ahead of the Christmas season.
This year, radio presenter and entrepreneur T-Bo Touch, Olympian Gold Medallist Roland Schoeman and 21 Icon and social entrepreneur Thato Kgatlhanye were among the high profile individuals. They rolled up their sleeves and got behind this year’s initiative by helping to hand out the schoolbags filled with goodies to the children, signing autographs and posing for the children’s selfies.
Sponsors Kelloggs, Croxley and 67 Blankets for Nelson Mandela Day also teamed up with Steyn City this year to generously donate food, stationery and looming kits filling the school bags with meaningful and fun items, and tasty treats.
Auto & General Insurance once again showed its support by donating funding for 3500 of the school bags. These school bags provide the children with a sense of dignity and pride for the coming school year. Also the general public, residents and participants in a recent ‘pledge a bag’ golf event held at Steyn City made a significant contribution by pledging bags in their individual or company capacity.
Comments Giuseppe Plumari, CEO of Steyn City Properties, “It was overwhelming to see the response from our golf day and the general public online – R110 per bag makes all the difference to a child and there was an incredible sense of goodwill among our visitors, future homeowners and residents to whom we would like to thank for their support.”
Adding another new dimension to the project this year, Steyn City placed an order for the Grade 7s of each primary school with Rethaka, who manufacture the innovative Repurpose Schoolbags. Rethaka’s founder and CEO, Thato Kgatlhanye recently made headlines as one of the youth icons in 21 Icons Season III ‘The Future of a Nation’ and captured the attention of Steyn City as a means to support social entrepreneurship in the country.
Kgatlanye’s company currently employs 20 people, 17 of which are people from her home town of Rustenburg producing 700 bags a month for rural communities throughout South Africa. Made out of recycled plastic collected from landfill sites, the bags are fitted with retro-reflective material that improves the bag’s visibility ensuring child-safety. A fitted solar panel also enables schoolchildren to use the inserted solar reading lamp as an energy source to read and study by.
“A lot of the children don’t have a school bag, their school books are either tucked under their arm or carried in an old plastic bag. Your support can empower lesser-resourced learners and provide something tangible and worthwhile that contributes to the child’s self-esteem by giving them some dignity,” comments a delighted Thato.
A cacophony of blaring carols, vuvuzelas, hooters and sirens from a fleet of large trucks sponsored by Stuttaford Van Lines and driven by Father Christmases made a fanfare along the William Nicol as the convoy made their way from Steyn City to neighbouring Diepsloot.
“If we assembled these lovely kids from Diepsloot just to feed them we wouldn’t change their reality. But I’m glad we are investing in their tomorrow. Each child is receiving a bag loaded with stationery, not just toys but instruments that will enable them to learn and craft their own destiny. We have the opportunity to make a difference, let’s seize the moment and build our nation one child at a time,” says Steyn City ambassador and Metro FM radio personality, Tbo-Touch, on his involvement with the project.
Steyn City’s approach has been to give back to the community, many of whom are employed at the development, and treat the children once a year with a gift that the Heads of the local schools deem a necessary item for their education.