PRETORIA – Over 80 tertiary students from poor households doing their first year at various South African learning institutions received laptops at the weekend donated by Zimbabwean company Zororo-Phumulani to help with their studies.
South African-based funeral insurance and repatriation service provider Zororo-Phumulani runs an annual programme to assist needy students.
The students from the University of Johannesburg, Wits Universit, Tshwane University of Technology and the University of KwaZulu-Natal received new laptops under an iniative that Zororo-Phumulani’s founder and chief executive Edwin Anderson said was inspired by “fees must fall” protests a few years ago demanding affordable tertiary education for all.
“We are doing this because as a company we believe so much in youth development and empowerment and there is not better way of doing this but through education and sports,” Anderson said.
“We know by donating these laptops it will not take away all the problem students face at the university, but it will definitely reduce pressure that comes with studying at a higher level.”
Zimbabwe’s ambassador to South Africa David Hamadziripi commended Zororo-Phumulani for extending its generosity for three consecutive years.
“I wish to commend you … for not only your consistency in the laptop giving initiative but for also increasing the number of recipients. It is my hope that we will see the same trajectory in the coming years,” he said.
Recipients included 18-year-old Zimbabwean Ashleigh Mabaire, a first year student at the University of Johannesburg who is studying computer science and said getting a laptop had motivated her to work harder.
“I really want to thank the company for giving me this opportunity and congratulate everyone who received a laptop because I know they worked really hard and had sleepless nights,” Mabaire said.
“One day we want to come back and show the company what we made from this initiative.”