Each year young girls in impoverished communities can miss up to 50 days of school for not having the correct hygiene products at their disposal. This important, but often unmentioned, challenge of keeping young women in school is at the heart of the Caring4Girls and Trek4Mandela Initiatives.
Thomas Schaefer, Chairman and Managing Director of Volkswagen Group South Africa (VWSA) and with his wife, Wendy recently delivered over 2 300 sanitary towels to Nkululeko Secondary School in KwaNobuhle, Uitenhage. These sanitary towels were purchased using funds raised by the late Gugu Zulu, member of the Volkswagen Motorsport family, during his Trek4Mandela campaign to climb Mount Kilimanjaro in July.
In Gugu’s honour, further donations were arranged by Volkswagen Motorsport and Volkswagen employees as part of the company’s Corporate Social Responsibility initiative themed ‘Volkswagen for Good’. In addition to Thomas and Wendy’s delivery, over 15 000 packets of sanitary towels will have been distributed by the end of this week to more than 1 200 girls to keep them in school until their final exams in November. This equates to a four-month supply per school girl.
Caring4Girls is a programme that helps underprivileged girls mainly in rural communities. The main objective of the programme, which is run by the Imbumba Foundation and funded by the Trek4Mandela initiative, is to provide hygiene training and products to underprivileged girls.
The delivery to Nonkululeko Secondary School in KwaNobuhle was delivered as part of the Amarok Social Test Drive Campaign. Amarok Social Test Drive allows companies and individuals to put the Amarok through its paces whilst delivering much-needed supplies to people in hard-to-reach communities in South Africa.
To date, the campaign dubbed ‘the test drive that matters’, has travelled more than 16 000 kilometres across the country and delivered over 15.8 tonnes of items such as water to the drought-hit towns in Free State and sewing machines to unemployed women in KwaZulu Natal.
“Education is one of the focus points in our CSR programme and as a caring company, Volkswagen has a responsibility to help vulnerable members of the communities that we serve, especially young girls who sometimes stay away from school because they cannot afford to buy hygiene products,” said Schaefer.
“We hope that our Amarok Social Test Drive delivery will make a difference in the lives of these young girls and make others aware of this important need in poor communities. Volkswagen is proud to have been a part of this initiative today. It is life changing not only for the young girls we are helping today but for us as a Company to be able to give back to this community that has supported us for the last 65 years,” concluded Schaefer.
For more information on the Amarok social test drive go to https://socialtestdrive.co.za/