South Africa’s professional soccer fraternity has again shown its willingness to assist the country’s extended military family with a R1 million donation to the South African National Defence Force (SANDF) Education Trust.
A symbolic presentation was made to SANDF Chief, General Solly Shoke, by Professional Soccer League (PSL) chairman, Dr Irwin Khoza, who is an honorary colonel, during the PSL awards ceremony earlier this month. This is the second time the representative body of South African soccer has made a meaningful contribution to the Trust, established by Shoke four years ago.
The country’s top soldier came up with the Education trust concept to provide for the dependents of soldiers and others in the SA National Defence Force either killed or badly injured while on duty. The Trust provides bursaries for primary, tertiary and university education to approved scholars and students.
SANDF Director: Corporate Communications, Brigadier General Mafi Mgobozi, said the Trust had to date awarded bursaries to 89 deserving children and young people.
Following the death of three SA Navy personnel in Durban earlier this year, Shoke said the dependents of leading Seaman Amrithlall Tothara Ramdin, Able Seaman Francois William Mundell and Seaman Henro Ter Borg, killed when they went to assist workers caught in a gas-filled pit, would be awarded bursaries from the SANDF Education Trust.
Another example of what the Education Trust does was given last year by Major General Roy Andersen, Chief of Reserves.
He called on an SA Irish Regiment soldier in hospital who lost both his hands during an ambush in Sudan.
“He explained to me his wife had no work and his injuries would prevent him getting work. I told him not to worry and that we would see to the education of his children. This is just one example of supporting our troops when they deploy,” he told those present at last year’s Trust fundraiser adding the turnout “demonstrates there is sensitivity towards the needs of our soldiers”.