On Thursday 28 October 2021 Witsand Primary School hosted the South African National Defense Force (SAND F). The top structure of the SAND F was represented and they donated 279 pairs of school shoes to the learners, along with the commitment of a lifetime partnership.
Earlier this year, principal Gerhard Matthyse met with Captain Yolisa Makalima and his delegation. They were looking for two disadvantaged families who they could assist with their basic needs. “During our conversations I became aware that the SANDF were also looking for ways to give back to communities. This was the start of our relationship. In May I was contacted by Captain Makalima to inform me that they wanted to donate school shoes to our learners,” said Matthyse. Witsand Primary became the link between SANDF and the Witsand community. Thobeka Hute, a senior management team member delegated by the principal said it felt as if God came to rescue their learners. “It was so heartwarming to see General Commander Thyalisi handing over the shoes to the needy learners. There is a verse in the Bible where there was a Good Samaritan who saw a half alive injured man lying hopeless. That’s what happened to our school,” said Hute (pictured above with His Excellency, Kanat Tumysh, Ambassador of Kazakhstan to South Africa) . The school received an email which informed them that as part of the Army Support Base Bakery opening, Witsand Primary will be part of the program. Later that same week the school received two computers, sponsored by the Ambassador of the Republic of Kazakhstan. “In March 2021 we hosted the Shadow Minister of Education of the African National Congress ANC. During our engagement, the Head of Office of the Deputy Minister of International Relations, Justin DeAllende, enquired on our needs at the school. He promised to engage with the Ambassador of Kazakhstan. From then I was in constant contact with him and the local ANC Councillor Mbombo. The submission to the Ambassador was accepted and approved, hence we are honoured with his presence and the computers,” explained Matthyse. “Most parents are the victims of COVID-19 and lost their jobs, so I saw the light on our learners faces on that day. It’s so sad to see learners walking to school in bad weather without a full uniform. This will bring a positive change in our learners’ lives,” said Hute. According to her, the General Commander also promised to adopt their school. He would make sure that they will have a garden which will produce healthy and fresh food, also helping parents at home.