Dream package for top learner

Friday, January 15, 2010
By: 
Gabi Khumalo

Pretoria - Mandisa Nene, who was ranked 6th and the highest placed African learner in KwaZulu-Natal after achieving seven distinctions in eight subjects, has been awarded a full bursary and her family will now have a decent house of their own.

Nene, from Umlazi, south of Durban, who shares a mud hut with her mother, who is a domestic worker and her brother, could only dream of enrolling at university until Minister for Women, Children and Persons with Disabilities, Noluthando Mayende-Sibiya stepped in and made her dream come true.

Mayende-Sibiya, with the help of the local structures and the generous support of local businesses in Umlazi, managed to negotiate a comprehensive package of assistance to Nene and her family.

This led to a bursary of R85 000 offered by Ithala Development Bank to help cover Nene's tuition, residence and books for her three-year Accounting Degree.

Jeena's Warehouse has also offered a R1 000 grocery to Nene's family for each month for the next year, while the eThekwini Municipality offered their assistance in ensuring that the Nenes get a decent house of their own.

Handing over the cheque to Nene, Mayende-Sibiya said it was inspiring to note that a child who lives in such conditions of poverty, hunger and depravation managed to compete with the best and most affluent in the province.

"She is indeed an inspiration to all who call this township of Umlazi their home; she deserves all the support she can get and as a community, we have a responsibility to ensure that such brilliance is rewarded to produce more successes," Mayende-Sibiya said.

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