Eqstra handed over a container library to the No-Moscow Primary school in Qunu, based in the rural area where Nelson Mandela was born. This is the Eqstra contribution towards 67 minutes of community service in celebration of Madiba’s 94thbirthday.
The handover event took place on 17 July 2012 when Eqstra employees and 8 of the learners on the Eqstra bursary program were joined by the ‘Bikers for Mandela Day’ team. The honoured guests included Bill Clinton and his daughter Chelsea, Mrs Graca Machel as well as the chief of Qunu. More than 1300 English and Xhosa books were sponsored by the Eqstra Trust, Eqstra employees and some of our business partners, namely Maskew Miller Longman and Arbern Earthmoving. The container was donated by APM Terminals and skilfully refurbished by some of our dedicated employees.
The highlight of the event was the official opening of the library by Bill Clinton, the former president of the United States. He encouraged the learners to read avidly as this would open a new world of imagination for them. Mrs Machel also emphasised the importance of education to the children which included the pre-primary and 228 Grade R to Grade 7 learners. Mr Clinton cut the ribbon and then proceeded into the Eqstra sponsored container library to listen attentively to the children reading to him as Chelsea and Mrs Machel looked on.
Eqstra also donated 20 avocado trees which were planted in the community garden.
The sponsorship of a container library and the fruit trees is part of an ongoing initiative where Eqstra provides resources that will positively impact the lives of people into the future. Eqstra has coined the term ‘Eqstralution’ to describe the philosophy of transforming society through education. The company’s Socio Economic Development initiatives focus on early childhood development to the post graduate phase providing the youth with skills to ensure that they will find meaningful employment in the technical and agricultural sectors.
“Eqstra is honoured to be involved in an initiative such as this where we are in a position to provide the Qunu community with resources to facilitate life-long learning and at the same time celebrate the birthday of a legend,” concluded Karen Keen, Eqstra’s spokesperson at the event
A major part of Eqstralution (68%) is the adoption of technical schools throughout the country by the various divisions. Eqstra has a long term investment in education and particularly in the Eastern Cape. The blueprint of our technical training support is Adelaide Gymnasium. Eqstra has sponsored Adelaide Gymnasium over a period of 7 years by supplying much needed equipment to the Motor Mechanical section. During this time, Eqstra’s monetary investment has been in excess of R1 000 000.00. In 2012 Eqstra implemented a bursary program for 5 Grade 10 learners who show potential to enter into a technical career. Every year we will sponsor an additional 5 learners until we have 15 learners in grade 10, 11 and 12 who will form part of the feeder process of the Eqstra Apprentice program.
Furthermore we have partnered with Marlow Landbouskool based in Cradock in the Eastern Cape, where amongst other things, have sponsored 5 bursaries for the next 5 years. The aim is to link these learners with commercial farmers where they can be mentored as they learn the necessary skills to be successful farmers in South Africa.