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Big-ups to the Glenwood SuperSpar for committing to their pledge, to support the Food Security Programme at the Durban University of Technology (DUT) that aims to ensure that no student goes hungry.

DUT’s Department of Student Counselling and Health, which is running the programme, is grateful for the support and food parcels it has been receiving from one of its donors, Glenwood SuperSpar on a monthly basis, starting from October last year.

The department’s Acting Senior Psychologist, Miss Candice Leith said the Food Security Programme: No Student Goes Hungry was initiated through the Dean of Students as far back as 2011.

She said they recently established a relationship with Glenwood SuperSpar, which has been consistent in donating non-perishable food items to the programme.

Expressing the department’s gratitude, Leith said she would like to say a big thank you to Glenwood SuperSpar for their generosity.

She stated that the items donated really help the disadvantaged students at DUT and assist the department to provide an interim measure until it can assist the identified students further.

“Many cases of hungry students were identified and referred on but there was no facility at the institution to assist them, and it seemed to be a widespread problem. As of the year 2020, DUT Student Counselling and Health department houses the Food Security Programme: No Student Goes Hungry. Funds for this programme is dependent on staff member contributions, funds raised from the Advancement and Alumni Relations Office and food donations,” said Leith.

Explaining how the food is distributed, Leith said they first identify the student in need who has to undergo a screening process.

Leith said during the screening process, they require the identified students to produce a letter of motivation as to why they qualify for this programme or food donation.

“We require a copy of ID, copy of student card, proof student registration, proof that they are not NSFAS funded or receiving any bursary, proof-documentation-no financial support. This can include a bank statement, payslip reflecting income at home, death certificate, pension documents, and grant documents. We then keep records of non-perishables items donated for auditing purposes. Following this we provide counselling to explore options to assist further with the food concern,” said Leith.
Glenwood SuperSpar’s Public Relations Officer, Mrs Stefanie Steffen said their relationship with DUT goes back a long way, as they have been donating to DUT for many years.

She said the earliest record of sponsorship was the DUT Golf Day in 2004. “ Since then we have been involved with donations to DUT, to the different DUT student residences as well as the Enactus Department. The more recent and monthly sponsorship, however, started in October 2019, when Mrs Nishie Govender came into the store to meet me. She then told me about the Food Security Programme, my husband and I discussed it and we wanted our business Glenwood SuperSpar to get involved in the programme,” said Mrs Steffen.

She explained that every month, she contacts the Fundraising and Stewardship Officer in the Department of Advancement and Alumni Relations at DUT, Ms Pretty Nokulunga Zulu, asking for a list of non-perishable items needed to feed the students. “She will send it through to me, we pick the items and send them off with the DUT driver on the same day. We donate mainly non-perishable items, such as: canned foods, mealie meal, sugar, rice, sugar beans and sanitary pads,” said Steffen.

Speaking about the time frame for their sponsorship, Steffen said they review their sponsorship yearly. She said depending on the funds available, they will then decide if they will be able to continue donating towards the DUT feeding programme. Steffen expressed how proud they were of being associated with the DUT Food Security Programme, providing food for the future leaders of the country.

Those who wish to be part of this programme can contact the Advancement and Alumni Relations Office or The Department Student Counselling and Health on 031-373-2266/
Pictured: Mr Tsepiso Thusi, Psychologist in charge of the Food Security Programme and Miss Candice Leith, Acting Senior Psychologist from the Department of Student Counselling and Health with some of the food items donated by Glenwood SuperSpar.

Simangele Zuma

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