Race to raise funds for Tshwane University of Technology needy

By James Mahlokwane 1h ago

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Pretoria – Tshwane University of Technology lecturers and academic staff rocked their running shoes and engaged in a marathon on Saturday to raise funds for their student food support programme.

The lecturers ran distances ranging from 10km to 90km, led by Professor Khumbulani Mpofu, from SuperSport Park in Centurion to the university’s Pretoria West Campus.

Their mission was to raise money for students facing hunger during the Covid-19 pandemic.

Championing the initiative was Khumbuzile Mdlalose, an alumni and Doctor of Engineering, who said food insecurity was a reality for many students.

“A well-fed student is an empowered student. The Covid-19 outbreak in South Africa has prompted an extension of the intervention by industrial engineering staff to ensure vulnerable students have access to food relief parcels during the current state of emergency.”

She said the food support project was initially launched to assist hungry students at the Faculty of Engineering and the Built Environment.

Spokesperson for the university Willa de Ruyter said that since the start of the Covid-19 crisis and lockdown, the project had grown significantly and was assisting more than 250 students.

With more than 400 students already requiring food relief, the aim is to increase the support to students by at least 200.

The students receiving support live around Pretoria Central, Soshanguve, Mabopane, Ga-Rankuwa, Mamelodi, Hammanskraal, Atteridgeville and surrounding areas.

Mpofu said they would not be able to raise enough funds for all students in need, but as long as they could help many, then they were headed in the right direction. He said members of society and the corporate sector were welcome to contact the university to extend a helping hand.

“As a former student who comes from the same disadvantaged backgrounds as many students, I know exactly how painful it is to be without food.

“At some point I was without accommodation and it’s for that reason that I understand the importance of helping where I can,” he said.

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Pretoria News

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