Access to quality education must be considered a human right to be experienced by all. Even so, more than 244 million children and youth globally are still out of school for a variety of reasons. This is something that Mukuru, Southern Africa’s leading next-generation financial services platform, is committed to helping change through the Mukuru Education Fund.
Launched last year with eight candidates awarded university bursaries, the organisation has further enhanced its bursary programme through a partnership with forgood, a social impact ecosystem equipping businesses to connect their employees to development needs. This has enabled Mukuru to now provide 20 employees with financial assistance for their child’s tuition fees in 2023.
“Through the Mukuru Education Fund, we want to empower our people to access the best educational opportunities for their children so they can one day trailblaze their own journey of inclusion and growth through learning. These bursaries are open to all Mukuru employees across Africa and signify our commitment to providing students with access to the best educational opportunities. The partnership between Mukuru and forgood helps to bridge the skills gap by providing access to education for the children of our employees across the continent,” says Deidré Vrede, CSI manager at Mukuru.
Beyond the employee initiative, Mukuru will also be awarding six new bursaries to foreign nationals and locals to study at a university or Technikon of their choice in South Africa. The bursary will cover tuition fees and textbooks. The fields that will be eligible for these bursaries are software development engineering and management, systems architects, data analysts, and general IT specialists.
The students who received Mukuru bursaries last year are still busy with their degrees, three of whom have begun their final year with continued financial assistance from Mukuru.
“Quality education is a vital stepping stone to getting the skills necessary to find employment or pursue entrepreneurial opportunities in the future. With digital becoming such a key pillar of our environment, we encourage the development of skills that can harness the potential of the Fourth Industrial Revolution and create work readiness in students,” adds Vrede.
For Paidamoyo Mapfuwa, a beneficiary of one of the Mukuru bursaries last year who is currently studying for a BSc in Computer Sciences and Informatics at the University of Johannesburg, this is a great initiative.
“My passion for programming has kept me going through all the tough times. Beyond this, I believe to be successful in IT, I need a degree. I can only do this with the help of Mukuru, who pays for my tuition and textbooks. This is a great relief to my parents, who are still struggling to pay for the education of my two siblings,” she said.