DURBAN - THE Daily News Milk and Welfare Fund donated milk, porridge, snacks and bowls to the Makabongwe Methodist Pre-School in Johannes Nkosi (Alice) Street, Durban on Monday as part of its Mandela Day initiative.
The donation could not take place on Mandela Day due to the unrest and looting in KwaZulu-Natal.
About 17 500 children, aged 6 years and below, receive a glass of milk and a bowl of porridge per school day, supplied every three months from the Fund.
Theresa Lukan, the pre-school’s principal, expressed her gratitude and noted that the school would not be what it is today were it not for the role sponsors played.
“I am incredibly grateful to the Daily News and all our other sponsors. We have had a long standing with the Daily News and we rely heavily on our sponsors and donors since most of our intake is from families that do not make enough money like street vendors.”
“I have been the principal for the past eight years but have been involved with the school for the last 10 years. We have 176 children in the school-aged between three and six years. Without the ongoing support, the school would not exist. Every bit that is donated to us counts.”
The Daily News Milk Fund has been running for over 80 years and is sponsored by the public, Independent Media staff and companies who donate funds. The funds are used to purchase milk, milk powder, porridge, chips and other products that are deemed necessary for the well-being of children.
“I am so thrilled to have given out some milk, porridge and to see the children happy. Seeing them happy makes my heart happy. The Fund wants every child to have a glass of milk everyday, no child must go hungry,” said Sushie Munsamy who works at Independent Media’s community projects.
The donation was well-timed because the school had been going through a rough patch following the events of the looting and unrest that affected their sponsors’ businesses.
“I am excited to have gotten milk and chips today.
“I love milk and it will make me big and strong,” said Grade R pupil Letita Faku.
To date, the Fund sponsors and donates to 114 creches, pre-schools and welfare organisations in the province, predominantly in Durban, as well as in KwaDukuza and Port Shepstone.
Daily News editor Ayanda Mdluli said: “We are thrilled that the initiative is gaining the traction and momentum required to ensure that we make a difference.
“Our view is that we are the people’s paper and we serve the interests of the masses in our vulnerable communities,” said Mdluli.