As a leading provider of services and facilities that promote access to information among South African citizens, we have an inherent focus on improving the lives of those in our local communities. In fact, our mission is to contribute to the educational, social and economic upliftment and development of deserving communities throughout South Africa.
Our Chairperson’s Fund sustains this objective in two ways: through promoting and supporting community development by working with organisations that specialise in our operational areas, and by inspiring and motivating employees to increase their involvement in social responsibility initiatives.
In terms of our socio-economic development, we have opted to focus on a select number of established and well-run non-profit organisations (NPOs). This enables us to give substantially larger donations that make a more measurable difference in the lives and development of local communities.
Our staff members are also active partners in many of our CSI initiatives, making a tangible difference in the lives of those less fortunate.
WHERE WE MADE A DIFFERENCE
During the past financial year, Sabinet and the Chairperson’s Fund assisted several key programmes and initiatives, while supporting a number of smaller charitable organisations through financial contributions and turnkey projects.
FURTHERING LEARNING IN CRITICAL STEM SUBJECTS
Core mathematics and physical sciences are key gateway subjects that open up most higher education opportunities; they are also critical competencies for the development of sorely needed, high-level skills that are necessary for job creation, economic growth and the full development of national capacities.
As a result, the Programme for Technological Careers (PROTEC) in Atteridgeville, Tshwane, that aims to assist learners in pursuing careers in the so-called STEM subjects of science, technology, engineering and maths, was identified for a learner excellence programme. The three-year project is expected to reach 30 Grade 10 learners from eight schools in the Tshwane district.
The intervention commenced in January 2017, with the selected learners remaining in the programme for three years until they complete matric in 2019.
The project will include:
- Additional tuition in mathematics, physical science and English
- Additional life skills, study techniques and career awareness
- Learner workbooks for mathematics, physical science and English
- Transport and catering for the learners
- Science kit, electronic equipment, mathematical instruments and stationery for the learners
The project aims to emphasise:
- Helping children reach their full potential through attaining the required skills and results to pursue further studies
- Career awareness, study skills and work experience
- Improving learners’ marks in mathematics and physical science in order to embark on STEM careers
EMPOWERING ADULTS THROUGH BASIC EDUCATION
Due to the inequalities experienced in South Africa’s apartheid past, more than three million adult South Africans today live without the basic educational skills they require to prosper and contribute to the economy. To address this, the government initiated Adult Basic Education and Training programmes to provide a general conceptual foundation towards lifelong learning and development.
The Chairperson’s Fund, in partnership with Tshwane Community Library and Information Services, offers an annual tutoring programme that accommodates approximately 100 adult learners in a basic literacy course.
REDEFINING COMMUNITY LIBRARY SERVICES
During the next financial year, we will once again help fund the National Library of South Africa’s Mzansi Libraries On-line project that aims to supply ICT infrastructure in the form of tablets to community libraries, enabling them to transform and redefine the services they offer. The pilot project focuses on 27 libraries, with a view to rolling it out to libraries across the country by 2018.
CREATING THE NEXT GENERATION OF READERS
Biblionef is an innovative book donation non-profit organisation that provides children from underprivileged communities with access to children’s books. The organisation aims to create lifelong readers who are good citizens and who can absorb information effectively and think for themselves.
Biblionef also aims to develop a society with 100% literacy and 100% access to education, where reading is deemed both a great pleasure and a necessity.
As an initiative that is so closely aligned to our own core library business, Sabinet and the Chairperson’s Fund support and sponsor various Biblionef projects on an ongoing basis.
REACHING OUT TO ICT SMMES
Our enterprise development programme aims to assist identified ICT businesses in their growth and development in a sustainable manner.
GENERAL FUNDING DONATIONS
Numerous ad hoc donations were once again made to organisations in line with the Chairperson’s Fund mission. These included Yomelelani Early Childhood Development Centre, Oliver’s House, Young Leeds, Senior Citizens Tea, Manell Kids and Nation Builder.
The Chairperson’s Fund committee has decided to give staff the opportunity to contribute to their choice of benefactors through an initiative called Give As You Earn. As part of this initiative, the fund will match all financial donations made by staff.