In Sub-Saharan Africa there are over 95 million school children that don’t have the benefit of a classroom desk. The lack of a desk, a writing surface, affects handwriting, concentration and overall academic performance. The Tutudesk Campaign provides portable school desks to children in Sub Saharan Africa. These lap desks are locally produced and make a noticeable difference in each learner’s school life.



In celebration of Youth Day 2014, MySchool MyVillage MyPlanet has partnered with the Tutudesk Campaign, a MySchool beneficiary, and set a target to raise over R280 000-00 to provide at least 2 000 learners in South Africa with lap desks. From the 13th to the 16th June MySchool will donate R1, over and above the donation to the cardholder’s chosen beneficiary, every time they swipe their MySchool card at Woolworths, Waltons, Toys R Us, Reggie’s, kalahari.com and Engen Foodstops.

Archbishop, Desmond Tutu, the campaign’s official patron, said: “I was a barefoot township urchin. I went to school where there were no desks. We sat on benches and when the teacher asked us to write, we knelt down on the floor and used the benches we had been sitting on as desks …. I wish Tutudesks had been available in my day!”

Results from an impact study done in 2012 covering 16 000 Tutudesk recipients, stated that 80% of teachers said that learner’s handwriting was easier to read and there was a 65% improvement in homework delivery. Teachers also noted that 72% of learners were able to write more during a lesson, 69% of learner’s showed improved concentration and 76% of learners were more motivated after receiving and using their own portable lap desk. 80% of teachers found that they were able to interact better with their learners in the classroom environment. Learners are also allowed to take their lap desks home every day, making it easier for them to do their homework.

All Tutudesks are locally produced, supporting local employment. They are made from
high-grade material and come with a 6-year guarantee. Each desk weighs less than 1kg and sits on the learner’s lap, providing them with a surface to write on, whether they are sitting on the floor or a chair. Desks have a handle, so they are easy to carry. The material the desk is made from is child safe, made from a mixed polymer that gives it flexibility and ensures that it can’t shatter like other plastics if dropped.

By 2020 the Tutudesk Campaign aims to have provided 20 million desks to 20 million children.
This Youth Day join MySchool on a step in that journey.

Anyone who wishes to support the Tutudesk Campaign further is encouraged to sign up for a MySchool MyVillage MyPlanet card and select them as your beneficiary.
 
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EDITOR’S NOTES

About MySchool MyVillage MyPlanet

The MySchool MyVillage MyPlanet fundraising programme is one of South Africa’s biggest community support programmes. We raise essential funds for schools, charities and environmental organisations through a system that encourages cardholders to swipe their card at our retail partners, who will donate a percentage of your purchase value to the beneficiary of your choice. The system allows cardholders to make a difference to a worthy cause without it costing them a cent. The MySchool MyVillage MyPlanet programme raises more than R3 million per month for the schools.

How does MySchool MyVillage MyPlanet work?

More than 700 000 South Africans carry MySchool cards. Supporters apply for a free MySchool MyVillage MyPlanet card and can select up to 3 schools and/or charities as their beneficiary/ies. When they purchase items from participating retailers they swipe the card with the purchase. A small percentage of their transaction is then allocated to their beneficiary school or charity. The partner stores pay the donation on behalf of the cardholder. All these transactions are recorded and a statement is sent to individual supporters on a monthly basis. The supporter card is not a credit or debit card but simply tracks transactions and funds raised.

MyVillage and MyPlanet

While originally the MySchool programme was exclusive to schools and only schools could sign up as beneficiaries, the programme has been extended to include charitable organisations and other worthy causes. MyVillage organisations are charities that care for people; MyPlanet organisations care for animals and the planet.

Getting a card

In order to become a supporter, you need to be registered with MySchool MyVillage MyPlanet and select a school or charity to support. You can register online at www.myschool.co.za, call 0860 100 445, or get a card at your local Woolworths store. It’s quick and easy.