The much-needed renovation of West Ridge High School’s Brick-Making Workshop has been made possible by a donation from the MySchool MyVillage MyPlanet’s Thuso Fund. 

West Ridge High School is a centre of learning for more than 700 children with special education needs in the central Durban area.  It is also currently the only school in the area offering a specialized vocational curriculum to enhance the employment opportunities for high school children with learning challenges.

The Thuso Fund for Schools and Charities was created by MySchool to support under-resourced schools and charities across South Africa through the funding of special projects.  It focuses on initiatives that address specific school and learner needs.  In 2014, West Ridge High received a R240 000 sponsorship for 36 new computers for their computer library from the Fund.   The latest funding of over R360 000 covers the building costs of a substantial upgrade to transform the school’s Brick-Making Workshop into a space conducive for learning.

“The delivery of our skills-based programme has been affected by our challenges with both space restrictions and the quality of our facilities,” says Dr Seetal, the Principal at West Ridge High, “This extension and renovation of the workshop is going to make a big difference in the lives of our learners and educators.  Skills training, such as brick-making, is an essential part of our offering as we need to meet the needs of many learners who may be unable to master literacy and numeracy at the levels that would enable them to be otherwise employed.”

West Ridge High School is only partially funded by the Department of Education, and their learners predominately come from severely under-resourced families which cannot afford school fees.  The school is therefore reliant on donors in order to achieve their educational objectives and maintain their facilities.

“We are delighted that we have once again been able to support West Ridge High in its efforts to provide a meaningful education,” says MySchool’s General Manager, Pieter Twine, “Our Thuso Fund specifically aims to help get funds raised through the MySchool MyVillage MyPlanet programme to highly deserving schools such as this one.  It helps us to make the difference in the communities where the needs are greatest, and we thank the MySchool cardholders who have helped to raise these funds.”

South African shoppers can support the Thuso Fund for Schools and Charities by signing up free for the MySchool MyVillage My Planet programme and selecting Thuso as one of your three possible beneficiaries.  You can do this online at and select up to three schools, charities and conservation organisations you would most like to support.  Swipe your card every time you shop at a range of participating retailers including Woolworths, Bidvest Waltons, Engen Foodstops and . With every swipe the retail partner makes a donation to your selected beneficiary, at no cost to you.