Masks delivered to underprivileged schools

Principals from Rosendal High, Lwazi Primary and Bottelary Primary School received the much-needed face masks for their schools. In front is Chrizelda Layman from Rosendal High, Lwazi Primary School principal Maxwell Mdini, and Ivan Crawford from Bottelary Primary. At the back are, from right, Du Toit Botes, Japie Mostert, Kobus Janse van Vuuren and Llewelyn Allen.

Face masks have become an essential item in the fight against Covid-19, which is spreading fast across the province, especially as some pupils went back to school this week.

Rosendal High as well as Lwazi and Bottelary primary schools received a donation of masks on Friday June 5 from Metropolitan in partnership with the Unite4One movement who are designing and sewing masks to assist in the fight against the pandemic.

The partnership has seen 10 000 masks donated to over 150 schools in vulnerable communities across the province.

The initiative is endorsed by the province’s Department of Education and aims to  assist the government in ensuring safe learning amidst the outbreak.

The company said while wearing a mask is compulsory even for pupils while at school, not everyone has access to a quality face masks.

It is for this reason that Metropolitan saw it fit to roll up its sleeves and find a way to make a difference in the lives of those who need it most.

The principals from the three schools could not hide their excitement during a hand over ceremony at the company’s head office in Bellville.

Maxwell Mdini, principal of Lwazi Primary School in Gugulethu, was relieved that his Grade 7 pupils would have quality face masks when school reopened on Monday.

He said the  school is situated between informal settlements where almost all parents are unemployed. 

“These masks are going to make a huge difference to the lives of our pupils and we are truly grateful to Metropolitan for the assistance they have offered. As a school, it is our duty to ensure safe learning and prioritising the safety of our pupils throughout the duration of the academic year is critical,” said Mr Mdini.

He said the high rates of infection in the province was of concern and that the provision of masks to pupils is a step in the right direction.

William Jantjies, Western Cape Education Department director for Institutional Management and Governance, who was also part of the handover ceremony, commended the company for their investment in education.

“Education is one of the most critical investments we can make in society. It is a tool that has the power to change the world. With that said, it is not only important for pupils to receive quality education but it is our duty to ensure that they are also safe. We are extremely proud of this partnership because as a government we can’t do everything and we do need corporate South Africa to come on board and join us on our journey of getting to the other side of Covid-19,” he said.

Metropolitan said delivery of the face masks to schools in vulnerable communities across the province will continue over the next two weeks.