It was a chance meeting that sparked a conversation between two inspirational women, who through their passion to empower young girls to take charge of their future, joined forces and now they have taken this message to 600 young girls at Mashiyamahle High School in Ndwendwe, North of Durban.
Tsogo Sun’s Samantha Croft – General Manager of Southern Elangeni & Maharani Complex lead the joint venture made up of Tsogo Sun and Rotary Durban, Umhlatuzana.
Croft, who was recently been recognised as Africa’s Leading Women in Business & Government in the Tourism sector, managed to mobilise the various partners to jointly sponsor R110 000 towards the SUBZ panties & pads project.
Impressed by the school’s track record of 98% pass rate in matric, Croft was even more inspired to ensure that girls from grade 8 to grade 12 can complete High School and go on to further their studies. “It is my dream to see young girls empowered and motivated. I’m so grateful for the opportunity to able to assist in restoring dignity and hope for their future through sustainable projects,” said Croft.
SUBZ panties & pads project was pioneered by Sue Barnes, in response to the need for washable sanitary pads and panties for the under privileged girls in her area. Young girls were reported to be missing approximately 3 months of school in a year due to lack of sanitary pads. SUBZ are panties to which sanitary pads can be clipped enabling girls to attend school more regularly in turn improving their grades.
“It was amazing to see everyone pull together and make this day a success. To see the girls proud of their bodies even during menstruation,” said Barnes.
Joined by a team of staff from Tsogo Sun and the various representatives from all partners involved, the girls were also treated to delectable delights by Tsogo Sun Executive Chef Shaun Munro.
“We would like to thank Unilever and Sir Juice for their generous sponsorship of products to assist us in making this event a success,” said Munro.
Croft also expressed gratitude to other partners, Mangwanani Spa for the pampering session and inspirational stories of hope shared by the therapists. Nedbank also delivered a talk and advised the girls of their internship programme.
“It is really great to see corporates pulling together to offer an overall informative and great experience,” she said.
Nimal Ramkissoon spokesman for Rotary Durban said: “This is a fantastic initiative and we look forward to more collaborative engagements with Tsogo Sun.”
SUBZ panties & pads have already received a follow up request from the school, for to return next year and educate the incoming grade 8 learners. Tsogo Sun will also be returning to educate the girls about food & nutrition which is also an essential factor in excelling in their studies.
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