In what’s been a very difficult year for us all, here at Gumboots Foundation UK we’ve remained committed to supporting grass roots projects operating in one of the poorest districts in South Africa – Alexandra Township in Johannesburg.

On top of extremely difficult conditions that exist in the Township at the best of times, the pandemic has wreaked havoc amongst an already struggling community. Our tirelessly committed project leaders, at some personal risk, have continued to offer practical help and support throughout the pandemic to families who due to existing levels of poverty, exacerbated by pandemic induced unemployment, are literally struggling to find enough to eat. Can you imagine trying to deliver food parcels to a desperate community whilst trying to maintain some semblance of social distancing? It’s been a heroic effort by our “boots on the ground” which is worthy of every penny of support we can raise.

In such an emergency inevitably attention and resources have had to switch from delivering the usual imaginative and forward looking services that our project leaders aspire to. But here at Gumboots UK we’re trying to remain focused on the bigger picture and envision a brighter future for the young people of Alex. Which is why this year we are trying to raise £7,500 to support our education project. Called Phetoho, (meaning “change”), the aim is to help develop children’s potential by supporting their educational needs in a number of ways. For some this means paying school fees to attend good quality schools outside of the township; for others help is offered with transport to and from school, buying school uniforms, (without which children cannot attend state schools), providing access to computers and organising after school activities which take children out of the township to places of interest and learning which broaden their range of experiences and aspirations.

You can help us reach our fund raising target by donating online through the Big Give portal between the 1st and 8th December 2020 where every donation (up to a maximum of £3,750) will be doubled! Once the appeal goes live on the 1st December we will post a link to the donation site. But in the meantime find out more about our Big Give Christmas Challenge Appeal here.