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As part of completing the National Diploma in Management Sciences: Public Relations and Communication qualification the students are required to participate in a community engagement project which is curriculum-based and mark-bearing for second-year second-semester core modules. The students are required to work with non-profit organisations of their choice to identify challenges and needs that these non-profit organisations are faced with and then after come up with public relations and communication solutions.

The Public Relations second year students that are volunteering at the Eagle Training and Development (ETD) recently hosted an event at the Durban University of Technology (DUT) Riverside Campus where they co-ordinated with Inkunzi Isematholeni Foundation, South Africa Optometric Association, THINK and Health Trust System.

The aim of the event was to educate the DUT students and staff members of the services each organisation offers and also market the EDT as it is not well known with the hope to create a relationship with the institution.

ETD is a non-profit organisation focusing more on the youth, women, orphans and vulnerable children, people with and taking (Tuberculosis) TB treatment, living with HIV and AIDS, in need of home-based care, old citizens, and the marginalized communities.

Public Relations student, T Gasa mentioned that they have been working with this non-profit organisation to identify public relations and communication challenges the non-profit organisation is faced with.

“Throughout our research we found that Eagle Training and Development was faced with financial difficulties and is not well recognised in South Africa and globally. We as Public Relation and Communication students from Durban University of Technology have decided to implement our ideology by enhancing their marketing and attracting additional sponsors,” explained Gasa.

Furthermore, he highlighted that Eagle Training and Development is a non-profit organisation which was established in October 2001 with the Department of Social Development after extensive research done by its founding members when they lost a close friend from an HIV related illness. Their primary objective is to improve quality of life for those who are infected and affected by HIV/AIDS, TB and Sexually Transmitted Illnesses (STIs) in South Africa and their vision is to see infection cases decreasing in South Africa and globally.

Public Relations lecturer: Ms Ntokozo Ndlela stated that the students are always keen to participate in community projects as they see that is enriching their experiences while at the same time making impactful contributions to the non-profit organisations they are working with.

“The community projects allow the students to put into practice what they learn in class. There has been some really outstanding activities over the years which is motivating for the students. Today’s event showed that the students have put effort in making it a success,” elaborated Ms Ndlela.

The South African Optometric Association has offered DUT students’ free consultation until December 2022.

The physical address is: Majid Optometrist, 465 Langalibalele Street (opposite Kismet Hotel, Pietermaritzburg). Contact: 033 345 5127 0r 083 503 1023. For more information they can visit their website www.saoa.co.za

Pictured: The Public Relations, second year students during their community engagement event.

Zanele Mashaba


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