Daily Dispatch

United ‘drive’ to spur developmen­t starts at Rhodes


RHODES University has turned Mandela Day into a six-month drive called “Trading Live for Mandela” which is aimed at supporting developmen­t for the Grahamstow­n community.

Rhodes spokeswoma­n Veliswa Mhlope yesterday said there would be over 140 events taking place which involved the coming together of Rhodes staff and students, state and independen­t schools, business, civil society, non-profit and community-based organisati­ons.

The idea is to share their skills and assets for the benefit of the Grahamstow­n community.

In March every year, the “Trading Live for Mandela” programme kicks off with a call for offers and requests. Rich and poor, employed and unemployed, young and old, black and white, local and foreign – can choose to offer a skill they have, in exchange for something they wish to learn.

The exchanges are published in the local newspaper and the city begins organising itself for the week of trading which officially kicks off in late July every year.

To kick-start the Mandela Day initiative­s at the university, vice-chancellor Dr Sizwe Mabizela spent time with the youth of The Home of Joy Child and Youth Centre NPO in Joza, where he read to the younger children.

“We are challengin­g the Grahamstow­n community to go beyond the notion of giving – which is a one-way gesture – to something more significan­t and sustainabl­e, that of sharing which requires giving and receiving an exchange of equals,” Mabizela said.

He said simply giving or helping could have the unintended consequenc­es of creating dependency.

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