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Message from the Director August 2020

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Welcome to our second newsletter for the year. We trust you are keeping safe and well. The COVID-19 pandemic continues to have a devastating health and socio-economic impact across the globe, with many countries battling to navigate their way through this devastating pandemic. In South Africa, where amongst other things our education system has been challenged like never before. Despite these challenges, Adopt-a-School Foundation continues to implement many of our projects in the over 600 schools it serves across the country.

It has been a challenging time for the Foundation. Level five placed our school-based projects on hold, causing unanticipated delays and financial implications on projects. The National Lockdown has affected financial security within the corporate sector, which has affected many of our donors. This has resulted in some future planned projects being postponed, while some donors have redirected focus to COVID-19 programmes developed by the Foundation. Our teams worked tirelessly to ensure that schools are able to recover lost schooling time and provide the necessary services for school communities. The work also included developing a new way of working that adheres to the COVID-19 legislation and a new menu of offerings that speak to COVID-19 relief for our schools and learners. We thank the many donors for their ongoing support and commitment to our school communities, who embraced these programmes and ensured that our learners continue learning in safer environments.

As a nation, we continue to deal with the COVID-19 outbreak through the risk-adjusted strategy approach. In level three, the Foundation adopted a phased-in approach for projects to resume and 30% of employees have returned to the office as of mid-June. Although schools are on a temporary break, the Foundation has made necessary arrangements with its schools for infrastructure projects to continue. The Foundation’s Social Welfare and Curriculum Delivery teams continues to work behind-the-scenes on projects, making the necessary adjustments to ensure their projects align with the Department of Basic Education timelines.

The Communication and Fundraising Team has been committed to creatively re-imagining existing events while developing new exciting campaigns and virtual events. This includes Back to School for Mandela Day, that now calls upon individuals and corporates to support learners with ICT support packs to continue learning at home. The Foundation has entered into new partnerships with ChairClub and School-Days, with details below.

It was with great sadness that earlier this week, we had announced the cancellation of the 14th Back to School Party. The Foundation is enormously disappointed that it will be unable to host a party this year. We have prided ourselves, and through your generous commitment to improving the quality of education, the Foundation has hosted these creative, unique and wonderfully fun parties over the past thirteen years. The physical Back to School Party will continue in 2021. Your support over the years has been highly appreciated and we look forward to hosting you again at the party in 2021.

The Foundation has developed many ways for the Back to School Party supporters to continue supporting the Foundation. There are new events in planning stage, of which will be communicated in due course. It is pivotal for us to remain committed and steadfast to assist the over 600 schools we serve through these difficult times. They need us now more than ever. Click here to donate.

These are challenging times and it is only through a united front, we will conquer.

Be safe through this difficult time.
Steven Lebere

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