On 2 July, 400 guests, dressed in school uniforms, attended the inaugural Bloemfontein Back to School fundraising dinner in support of education foundation, KST. The event took place at the Emoya Estate and was hosted by Deputy President and Shanduka Foundation Chairperson, Cyril Ramaphosa, Free State Premier Ace Magashule, Free State MEC for Education, Tate Makgoe and Kagiso Trust Chairperson, Reverend Frank Chikane.
Over R1.8 million was raised through individual and corporate pledges on the night which will support KST’s Free State whole school development programme in 413 schools in the Fezile Dabi and Motheo districts.
During the event’s panel discussion, Free State MEC for education, Tate Makgoe said, “There is a lot that needs to be done but fundraisers such as these are a step in the right direction in supporting programmes that create positive change for learners in the Free State, providing them with the skills and the knowledge to empower them to reach their full potential. These events also give companies and individuals an opportunity to contribute to education in their community. Together we can make a difference in the future of South Africa. ”
Shanduka Foundation Chairperson, Cyril Ramaphosa, spoke of some of the key elements of whole school development. “It is about enthusiastic and passionate school leadership and hardworking pupils with supportive parents, living in a community that values its schools.” He shared insight into the KST’s community-centric building model which offers temporary employment opportunities to the parents of school children and the use of community businesses. Already, over 700 temporary jobs have been created and 80 community businesses have been involved in the development programmes.