The MUT anchor strategy in its infant stages is already proving to be a long-awaited support programme for the surrounding communities. Yesterday, Marcomms extended the support to Shumayela and Menzi High schools by sharing the food donation received from Gift of the Givers. Umlazi township schools are naturally the first strategic partner to MUT. Adopting these schools to benefit from University initiatives goes a long way in making sure that the anchor strategy materialises. “Our thinking was highly influenced by our strong feeling of good neighbourliness, which is part of the Anchor Strategy, our guiding map on how we should deal with our immediate communities,’ said Mbali Mkhize, Senior director at Marcomms.
Thabile Mkhize, a Learner Support agent at Shumayela High, said their school is surrounded by disadvantaged communities who present all kinds of challenges. “About 90% of leaners at Shumayela come from families who rely on grants, including orphans who live with relatives. This food donation has brightened our day,” said Thabile. Thabile said there was an orphan learner in her school who stays alone, so she only gets support from her grant. She said this learner needed that kind of help.
At Menzi High School, the situation seems to be more dire. The Principal of the school, Muntu Ntombela, said one of the teachers was told of a learner who would go at night and search for what they could eat in the dustbin.
Muntu added that they were aware that some learners would come to school for food as the school has a feeding scheme; such learners would struggle as there was nothing at their homes.
The Gift of the Givers had delivered the following food items to the University at the beginning of May: 500 x 10kg maize, 500 x 100s tea, 500 x 1L juice concentrate, 3000 x baked beans, 500 x 500g pasta, 500 x 1kg instant porridge, 500 x 500g soup mix, and 500 x 900g.