Trevor Noah Foundation to improve education system in SA

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By Colleta Dewa

Johannesburg  Internationally commended comedian Trevor Noah this week launched a crowd-funding campaign on local donations crowd-funding platform, BackaBuddy, to raise R2 million in a matched giving effort to empower education through his recently launched, Trevor Noah Foundation.

Noah was targeting people to donate towards the cause during the Giving Tuesday SA until New Year’s Eve. Giving Tuesday is the global day of giving back on the Tuesday following Black Friday and Cyber Monday.

South Africa launched The Giving Tuesday concept was last month.

On a YouTube post, Noah encouraged people to prioritise quality education as part of creating a better future.

“I’m excited to announce that I will be donating more money into the Trevor Noah Foundation which supports schools and teachers around South Africa getting them what they need. I will be donating whatever you do and I will match it up to R2m,” he said in a YouTube video.

Noah added that society needs to appreciate the awesome work done by teachers in emancipation of people’s lives.

“For me, I’ve come to realise the secret is great teachers. In my life and the lives of many other kids, one great teacher has made all the difference. To this day, business economics and history are my favourite subjects thanks to teachers like Mr Darby and Mrs Gold.

“My favourite teachers were those who engaged me in a way that made me feel like they loved the subjects as much as they wanted me to love it,” Noah said. 

The Foundation’s pilot programme began this year, helping orphaned and vulnerable learners in Grades 9-12 at New Nation School in Vrededorp government school. The school has performed well academically despite lacking resources and facing issues of statelessness, abandonment and poverty. Snenhlanhla Vilakazi official from the Giving Tuesday said they had to introduce the concept in South Africa because giving back should be made a norm.

Vilakazi added that a total of R4.2 billion was raised globally as part of giving back. “It harnesses the collective power of individuals, communities, and organisations to encourage local philanthropy and to celebrate generosity worldwide. The idea is simple – if you shop on Black Friday or Cyber Monday, consider a gift back to those who need it on Giving Tuesday,” said Vilakazi.

She emphasised that the day is not only about giving money but also sharing stories of motivation. Funds raised by the crowd-funding campaign, will be matched 1:1 by Trevor himself up to R2 million. The funds will be managed by the Trevor Noah Foundation to assist various schools across South Africa in curbing obstacles that stand in the way of students and teachers reaching their full potential.

As a token of appreciation, donors will be randomly selected to receive various gifts. As a result – five donors whose contribution received by 27 November will receive a pair of VIP tickets to the Global Citizen Festival on 2 December.

Meanwhile, 20 donors will receive a signed copy of Trevor’s memoir ‘Born a Crime’, one donor will get a personal thank you tweet from Trevor and another will receive a pair of tickets to Trevor’s next comedy show in South Africa on dates to be announced.

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