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Donation banishes illiteracy for visually impaired learners

3 Dec 2019

Sibonile Primary SChool Principal, Lindi Mhliungu (centre) holds a cheque donated by Fundi staff

Story by Benedict Leteane

 The pupils of a school for deaf, blind and visually impaired children have been saved from a fate of illiteracy, thanks to the donation of reading equipment by a non-profit organisation.

 Fundi, which is a bursary fund administrator, donated R30 000 to Sibonile Primary School, in Kliprivier, Johannesburg to be invested in new Tatrapoint braille equipment for blind and visually impaired grade 1 to 3 learners at the school.

“This is a pen for blind learners. It will enable the blind learner to be able to read and write, which is an important part of their learning experience,” said Lindi Mhlungu, the principal of the school with 189 learners.

 According to BlindSA, a national organisation representing the needs of blind and visually impaired persons, schools for blind learners in South Africa do not have sufficient braille-writing machines. Learners at these schools are forced to share available Perkins braille machines.

“We visited the school and fell in love with what they are doing. We spoke to the principal. We all thought our contribution could help to upgrade the school by providing braille machines,” said Fundi’s chief marketing officer, Mala Suriah.

Fundi collaborated with Jicama 89, a “non-profit organisation whose primary purpose is to support deserving organisations in their efforts to meeting the needs of those less fortunate and able”, according to the organisation’s website. The NPO was already involved in supporting learners at Sibonile school.

For Fundi, the donation to the school was part of its ‘Know more, Be more’ campaign. “This is just a start of our support to the school,” said Suriah. “One of our values is life-long journey. These 20 learners will grow with this equipment.”

 “This is an investment to the future of our learners”, added the principal.



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