Nomqhele Sisa Nkomo
School holidays are over, and as parents brace for the pressures that come with fees payments and providing basic school supplies for their bundles of joy, not every child will have the privilege of getting everything that will make their third term easier.
This sad reality for most families is what led Lady Tshawe, founder of popular clothing brand Ndebele Crush, to launch the Backpack Initiative.
Through this charity drive, a few lucky underprivileged learners shall be assisted with a range of supplies as the schools open.
Lady Tshawe explains that she started the initiative as a way to give back to her community. The concept or ‘ubuntu’ forms a core part of her personal beliefs.
She says, I have always wanted to give back to the community as I believe that ‘umuntu ngumuntu ngabantu’. The concept of ubuntu is us being each other’s help and this initiative is my way of honouring that ideology.
She is playing her part in making sure learners can fully focus on their studies without having to worry about school supplies. The Backpack is not only limited to stationery, but other essentials like toiletries, satchels, sanitary wear and even non-perishable food.
Being an award winning actress, author, musician and poet, Lady Tshawe is counting on her vast network of industry peers to assist her in this noble cause.
“With regards to the successful implementation of this, I have asked a few friends in the arts industry to help me with this initiative. The ultimate goal really is to help someone who really needs it, so If I impact one student’s life, then I have made my impact,” she adds.
Indeed, the arts community has heeded her call for support, as some people have already started making contributions to the cause. “People are supportive which is heartwarming. I believe that anything done not for personal gain is worth supporting,” she beams.
There has been a minor issue of pooling the resources together, but it’s a surmountable challenge. “Putting together the resources together has been a challenge but we’re rising above that,” she says.
Identifying the intended beneficiaries of the initiative has also been a challenge, as this is the first run of the charity drive. However, she can yet again count on her dependable community to help her identify those who need this Backpack the most.
Lady Tshawe explains, “Also, identifying the recipients of this backpack has been difficult since this is a new initiative starting for this third term. I have reached out to my networks for assistance in identifying students in need and approaching them personally.”
It surely does take a village to raise a child, and helping them with basics will surely make learning easier.
For those willing to donate to this initiative, please feel free to contact Lady Tshawe on +263 77 467 0421 and join her in making a difference in children’s lives.