Esther Mahlangu, Betty Shoba and Theo Morkel.

Transalloys celebrates the new school year with learners

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Transalloys recently celebrated the start of the new school year and the possibility it holds with over 300 learners across its stakeholder communities. Partnering with PEP and the local municipality, the company gifted learners from vulnerable households with smart new uniforms and school shoes – setting them up for success as they start the academic year.

As part of its corporate social responsibility and investment in its stakeholder communities, Transalloys recently launched a new school uniform drive to equip learners for the year ahead, and make them excited about going to school in the morning. “A school uniform creates an important sense of belonging,” explains Christopher Sekgobela, the HR Manager at Transalloys. “It connects you to your school community, and gives you a means of identifying with them. This is why it’s so important for each student to have – especially when they’re just starting out at school.” 

Esther Mahlangu.

After realising that there were many students still without uniforms across a number of schools in the Witbank area, the company decided to take action. “Because many of the affected children came from vulnerable homes however, we wanted to take a different approach. Sizing and fitting of each uniform would need to be done with care and sensitivity – which is why we approached the management team at PEP,” explains Sekgobela. “We shared our vision of purchasing the uniforms and school shoes from PEP, whilst ensuring each child received the care and attention needed to get them the right size of all the clothes needed. We wanted them to have the best possible uniform experience – which PEP delivered on remarkably.”

Busi Sibeko, the Regional Manager of PEP, notes that being part of the project was a privilege: “Working with Transalloys and the teachers at the various schools, we were able to meet and measure the children we were creating this surprise for – and then witness their absolute delight when they were [resented with their very own uniform on hand-over day.”

Having the local municipality an additional part of this process also meant that the learners could celebrate in style at the eMalahleni Banquet Hall on 27 February 2023, with the uniforms handed over by Transalloys GM Theo Morkel. “We specifically created the day to be a celebration as opposed to a handover,” he explains. “The event focused on the children: what they had achieved to date, and the bright futures that lie ahead of them. Our aim was to both inspire and delight them, treating them to a day they wouldn’t forget!”

From the smiles and laughter seen on the day, the collective team’s objectives were definitely achieved – laying the foundation for similar events going forward.

“Given the challenging circumstances so many of our communities and families find themselves in, we need to work even more closely together across government and business to serve and uplift those in need,” says Councillor Nhlapho, the MMC in the LED component from eMalahleni Municipality. “This event helped us to touch and transform 300 lives in a positive way. We hope that each of these children will continue to feel our collective love and care each time they wear these new uniforms. In that way, we will have given them a headstart on the year, and encouraged them to be the best versions of themselves – learning and growing with their hearts and minds set on the bright future ahead.”