DNAfit’s CEO Avi Lasarow is Honorary Consul for South Africa in the UK and a Patron of the Mzimkhulu Trust because he believes in their cause. This Mandela Day we tell you the story of the Mzimkhulu Trust and ask you to add to the magic that is Mzimkhulu. 💖
Mzimkhulu means big or great house 🏠
Traditionally, in African culture, when new wives join a family they live in smaller houses on the same plot of land as the elders (the parents and older folk). The elders live in the “big” house. It is where they go to for advice, guidance and help, should they need it. The Mzimkhulu Trust is proving to be the place hundreds of kids can go to for just these reasons: advice, guidance and help.
The Mzimkhulu Trust needs our help to build a Great House of Learning: a school, where young minds can flourish into tomorrow’s leaders and pioneers.🎓
Earlier this year, DNAfit visited the Mzimkhulu Trust
Simon Dean (VP of Brand and Strategic Brand Partnerships) and Andile Manyathi (Head of Human Resources) travelled to Mthatha, creating this film to help them raise funds for the children.
The school's immediate needs are:
- A Borehole
- An additional Building
- Providing staff with salaries
Currently, the school uses rainwater collected into tanks as a source of water. What they need is a borehole so that there can be running water. Funds are required in order to build the borehole.
An additional building
Currently, the school's space is very limited. As the school grows, the staff have had to decline admissions due to lack of classrooms. Additional space would allow more young people to be enrolled in the school thereby changing more futures.
The school has six staff members comprising of two teachers, one cook, two gardeners and one security guard.
All the above mentioned six staff members work for almost nothing–yet they have no other job except the work they do for the school in helping the children get a better education. They are the direct reason why the children are learning so much and developing so well.
The passion is there–especially in the teachers. Their passion for learning is something that needs to be praised and by paying them what they are worth, it will further enhance their drive for development. We want to let them know they are appreciated for all that they do for the children in the village. The Trust cannot afford to pay them better salaries. For now, the trust can only afford to give them allowances.
With your help, the Mzimkhulu Trust can pay them appropriate salaries for the hard work they do, as the staff members themselves have their families to feed. Moreover, there is an intention to extend the opening hours of the school. This, however, cannot be achieved without offering the staff members the salaries that they deserve. 🔆
If you're able to contribute, you can donate to the Mzimkhulu Trust via Givey using the button below:
If you’re unable to donate, but would still like to show your support, give their Facebook page a like and a share to help raise awareness. Any support–no matter how big or small can go a long way towards making a difference.
How did the Mzimkhulu Trust start?
It started with one mom, Lorraine Poswa, who was babysitting the kids in her area under a tree. 🌳 She sang songs and played games with the children. The children were of pre-school age and in all her wisdom she knew the benefits of developing the children’s understanding of the world, during their formative years.
Recently, there have been many studies around the importance of early childhood development (during their first five years of life). The formative years lay the foundation for healthy children to grow into well-adjusted teenagers and ultimately become productive happy adults who transform their communities toward a better quality of life.
This is what the Mzimkhulu Trust is aiming for, a cycle of success that keeps turning. 🙌
When Lorraine saw this engagement with the children under the tree starting to have positive effects, the community mobilised to try and get as much assistance from social grants and any organisation that could help them build what is now the start of an institution of learning for little ones to thrive in. A simple warm safe space, protected from the elements to help them grow healthy minds and bodies.
This little makeshift school ‘under the tree’ transformed from babysitting service to having trained teachers guide the development of curious little minds. Now it’s grown over the years, into an organisation that provides a foundation of learning for children to spread their wings. And although it has had many positive phases in its growth, there is a long way to go to turn it into a fully functional safe haven of learning.📚
Our CEO and co-founder of DNAfit, Avi Lasarow is patron of the Mzimkhulu Trust because he believes in the work they are implementing for positive change. They have done so much, with so little, and he believes in their vision for the journey ahead.
Avi’s involvement with the Mzimkhulu Trust dates back as far as a few years ago when he used to receive invitations to fundraising gatherings from Lindiwe Poswa.
Randi G Fine said: “Be the beacon of light in someone’s darkness.” Lindiwe Poswa epitomises this quote, showing us all how to be beacons of light, by setting the example.
Unfortunately, each time Lindiwe invited Avi, he could not attend due to other commitments but he gave donations. It was encouraging to Avi, to see Lindiwe’s dedication and commitment from the start. Lindiwe used to invite people over for a meal and ask them to leave behind donations that they would be comfortable with imparting in aid of the school that she is supporting in South Africa, in the rural Eastern Cape, through the Mzimkhulu Trust.
Steve Maraboli said, “A kind gesture can reach a wound that only compassion can heal.”
Avi says he learnt this compassion from Lindiwe. Lindiwe Poswa on behalf of the Trust asked him to be the Patron of the Trust. As a South African who has a passion for his country, Avi did not hesitate to agree. He realised the importance of the work they are doing with a group of UK barristers from One Pump Court Chambers. These barristers built the school i.e. they are responsible for the whole infrastructure.
Avi wanted to be one of these people who are doing so much for the children and the community in his country, South Africa. Even though he understood this role was not going to be easy for him, due to his own work pressures, he still felt the need to be part of this project, mainly due to its massive impact and the difference it’s making in the rural community it is located in.
This video aptly captures the heartwarming soul of this little school and the impact it is having to the children attending it.
This video shows how far the school has come from a gathering of kids under a tree. Even though they have received assistance in many forms, aiding in their growth, there is so much more work to be done for these kids and the community they belong to.
What is Mandela Day?
Mandela Day is celebrated on the 18th July every year, because this is the birthday of the legendary Nelson Mandela. “No matter how small your action, Mandela Day is about changing the world for the better, just as Nelson Mandela did every day.”
This is what we ask of you for Mandela Day 2019… if you can lend a helping hand wherever you can, look to the Mzimkhulu Trust and this little school they have helped water from seedling to tall stalk.
You can help make this stalk grow into a giant tree that can provide the shade of education to the community it currently serves. Hold hands with the Mzimkhulu Trust, hold hands with Lindiwe Poswa in her vision, of giving those who are less fortunate than us, to ensure that they have a future that is better and brighter than their past.
Become a part of the Mandela Day Community and provide aid to those whose basic needs are in need of much development, nourishment and growth.
Another legendary figure Mother Theresa said: “You have never really lived until you have done something for someone who can never repay you.”
Happy Mandela Day! Make your Mandela mission count this Mandela Day with reaching out to the Mzimkhulu Trust.
P.S. Don’t forget to give their Facebook page a like and a share to help raise awareness!