Sunday, April 11, 2021
Public Relations

StreetSmart defies Covid-19 challenges to support South African youth

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Despite the various phases of the Covid-19 lockdown affecting all industries, StreetSmart SA managed to raise a total of R615 000 to support 35 organisations.According to Melanie Burke, Chairman of StreetSmart SA:“StreetSmart’s fundraising was severely impacted by the lockdown, but in spite of current financial pressures, we are still grateful to be able to disburse funds to support this life-changing work with vulnerable children”.

StreetSmart SA was opened in 2005 by a group of concerned Capetonians under the patronage of Archbishop Emeritus Desmond Tutu and comprises resourceful board members representing business, and the hospitality and tourism industries.

The organization raises funds for street children’s education, skills training and family reunification programmes, in partnership with restaurants, beneficiary organisations and sponsors.Their main goal is to be part of the process of social normalisation and to encourage the public not to give money into the hands of a child as this keeps them on the streets.

StreetSmart SA ensures that every cent donated by diners goes towards social and educational upliftment projects for street children. They recently handed over R25,000 to the Swellendam Bursary Fund to support promising local young people wishing to study at university or college but who do not have the means to pay for their studies.

“StreetSmart is such an easy to run initiative, and it makes a huge difference in the lives of children and young people – right here in our community. We would like to see many more Swellendam establishments participating to give visitors to our town the opportunity to give responsibly and not in the hands of young people who beg,” says Mari-Louise van der Merwe, Coordinator of StreetSmart Swellendam.

Funds are raised by adding a R5 donation to a patron’s bill. This donation is voluntary, and donors are able to contribute more if they wish to. There are currently 5 establishments in Swellendam that have embraced StreetSmart’s vision to make a real difference in the lives of young people by giving their guests the opportunity to be real change-makers in their own community. They are 18ZeroOne @ De Kloof Estate, Bergview Guesthouse, Elianthe Guesthouse, Field & Fork, La Sosta Restaurant and Powell House.

“The StreetSmart donation is a welcome injection in support of the Bursary Fund. We are extremely grateful for the donation because it enables us to provide bursaries to young people of Swellendam who merit financial support,” said Basil May, honorary president of Swellendam Bursary Fund.

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