eMdantsane, January 30, 2017; Two of East London’s landmark shopping centres, Mdantsane City and Hemingways Mall, came together to give-away school shoes to underprivileged children.
“The sister malls, which are owned by South Africa’s largest black-owned JSE-listed property group, Rebosis Property Fund, handed over a combined R100,000 worth of new shoes this week in an effort to improve school attendance and bolster education in the Eastern Cape,” said the organisers in a press statement.
The Mdantsane City Mall kicked off the East London campaign on Monday, with provincial MEC for education Mandla Makupula; giving new footwear to 371 needy pupils from nine primary schools (Sandisiwe, Sakhikhaya, Lwandisa, Funulwazi, Nontsikelelo, Inkqubela, Embekweni, Isibane and Nobhotwe primary schools) in the most poverty-stricken parts of Mdantsane.
Mdantsane City general manager Dean Deary said; “the underprivileged pupils had also been treated to lunch from the KFC outlet at the mall.
“Mdantsane City is proud to be part of this initiative, which embraces the growth of our community and assists the people of Mdantsane,” and that; “as simple as a pair of shoes could have a major impact on a child who had to walk to school barefoot every day,” he said.
Hemingways Mall also played its part, as 536 children from five schools (Nontuthuzelo, Makinana, Nompumelelo, Lujiza and Masakhe primary schools) in impoverished Duncan Village received their footwear.
General manager Reinette van Tonder said; “Instilling pride among pupils would help them to succeed in often-difficult circumstances.
“We are honoured to be making a difference to our underprivileged learners by gifting them with a sense of self-confidence and belonging as they walk the road to an education. The young pupils of East London are our city’s future,” she added.
According to Rebosis group marketing manager Deborah Bailey, providing school shoes is a tangible and practical solution, giving relief to the children, many of whom cannot afford public transport and are forced to walk long distances each day.
“As part of our social and ethical mandate, Rebosis Property Fund has recognised an overwhelming need to contribute positively to communities surrounding its shopping centres,” said Bailey.
She said each of Rebosis’s four major malls; Forest Hill City in Centurion, Baywest Mall in Port Elizabeth, Hemingways Mall and Mdantsane City in East London, had carefully selected their beneficiary schools according to need within their respective communities.
The combined value of this national programme is aid to be R200,000.