STENDEN STUDENTS RAISE R80,000 FOR PORT ALFRED SOUP KITCHEN
A FASTING fundraising drive by NHL Stenden University students in the Netherlands has netted R80,000 for the Port Alfred Soup Kitchen.
Two Stenden students, Franzi Helm and Simona Basheva came up with the idea, and teacher Jenifer Penn supervised the fundraiser.
The fundraising drive, themed Hold Your Hunger, was held simultaneously at Stenden’s Port Alfred and Netherlands campuses.
Helm explained that students stayed awake overnight for 12 hours and went without eating.
About 30 students and seven staff members took part at the Netherlands campus.
“We were sponsored by friends, parents and grandparents,” Helm said.
One student, whom she did not mention by name, was able to raise about ß500 by herself.
Explaining the reason why they chose not to eat or sleep during the drive, she said: “We wanted to know what it feels like to be without food and we wanted to raise awareness of how some people live.”
She said the participants found it challenging having to go without food but they kept themselves distracted and entertained by playing video games and other activities.
She said other students had shown interest in the event and Helm believed that next year’s fundraiser might be an even bigger success.
Helm handed over the cheque to the Port Alfred Soup Kitchen on behalf of her fellow fundraisers, last Thursday afternoon.
Stenden SA executive dean Wouter Hensens commended the fundraiser and said money raised at the local campus, about R6,000, had already been handed over to the soup kitchen.He said after Stenden University’s recent merger with another university in Holland, called NHL University of Applied Sciences, they had about 25, 000 students and were an institution with the potential to make a difference in society.
Next year, they hope to include the Thailand, Bali and Qatar campuses in the Hold Your Hunger fundraiser.
One of the donors, the Townships Foundation, was pioneered by fourth year student Simona Basheva.
Helm said the Townships Foundation focused more on orphanages in townships, targeting the most vulnerable in society.
The Townships Foundation assisted mostly with clothing, while Hold Your Hunger focused more on helping provide food to the needy, she said.
HEARTY DONATION: NHL Stenden University students in Hollland raised R80,000 for the Port Alfred Soup Kitchen at a recent fundraiser. Stenden South Africa executive dean Wouter Hensens, left, with student Franzi Helm, who handed over the cheque to Helmut Hartleb and Debra Harris of the Port Alfred Soup Kitchen