School of Education Staff and Students Involved in Exam Food Drive
Staff and students from the School of Education recently joined forces to work together on a drive in which they donated food and toiletry items as part of an initiative to help needy students during the tough final exam period.
The Academic Leader: Teaching and Learning at the School, Dr Sithabile Ntombela, said, ‘When you’re hungry, you can’t put in the extra hours required to study effectively. This, in turn, affects your results and reduces your chances of moving on to the next year of study.’
The food drive is aimed at students from impoverished backgrounds many of whom are in the campus residences. The hampers consist of basic toiletry items and food items such as canned beans, maize meal, pasta and rice.
‘There’s always someone you know who is less fortunate than you and the best of friendships can be formed by the extension of a kind gesture,’ said Ntombela. ‘One can’t turn a blind eye to others’ sufferings. Life is about supporting others to get to the finish line.’
Co-founders of the movement “That’s Maverick” and leaders of the food drive, Mr Phinda Fikeni and Mr Lindani Shezi, who have revealed that they too are struggling financially, have managed to raise R1 200 from their residence (Eagles Castle) inmates to purchase some of the food items.
‘Many of the donors are compassionate and were willing to assist in this initiative because they understand the plight of these students, having experienced it themselves at some point in their university lives,’ said Shezi.
Ntombela added, ‘In training teachers we emphasise the need to become sensitive teachers who are aware of, and responsive to issues children face if teachers are to contribute positively to the total development of a child. And what our students and staff are doing with the Food Drive endorses and confirms what we are teaching them. We have to practice what we preach.’