“Alone we can do so little. Together we can do so much” – Helen Keller

During the month of June, Thai Africa Restaurant Group ran a fundraising campaign at its Joburg restaurants to raise funds for an educational trust. The “small bites for small kids” campaign was launched at Wangthai, Kong, So Yum and Orient as a means of giving back for the period of Youth Month. It saw 10% of the takings from dim sum/small bite dishes going to the Thandulwazi Trust in support of the Thandulwazi Maths and Science Academy.

The academy seeks to improve the state of maths and science teaching and learning in schools in and around Gauteng. More than 2 400 learners and teachers participate in programmes offered by Thandulwazi each year. Around 95% of learners who attend Thandulwazi’s Saturday School pass the National Senior Certificate, with more than 50% obtaining a Bachelor degree pass. A significant number of students who participate in Thandulwazi programmes achieve distinctions in both maths and science.

“Thousands of candles can be lighted from a single candle, and the life of the candle will not be shortened. Happiness never decreases by being shared” – Buddha

Here’s what the restaurant managers had to say about the importance of charity work:

“I am a huge believer in giving back and helping out in the community and the world. Think globally, act locally, I suppose. I believe that the measure of a person’s life is the effect they have on others, and this is our way of affecting. It is something that comes from the heart to me. Dim Sum translated means ‘to touch the heart’, which is why our ‘small bites for small kids’ initiative was so apt and very appropriate!”

Johnny Beardsley-Nel, Kong

“Education is close to my heart. I believe education will eradicate joblessness and create jobs for our future generations. If we educate this generation, we will have a solid foundation for the next, which will give them better tool for their children, and so on. Science and maths are the way forward to sorting out environmental issues and global warming, which the next generation will – unfortunately – have to fix.”

-Gary Beardsley-Nel, Orient

“Giving back to the Thandulwazi Maths and Science Academy means a unique opportunity to commit ourselves to philanthropy and furthering education. We are very proud to be able to contribute to such a successful institution. ‘Small bites go bigger’ was literally our way of giving food for thought. To be able to contribute to educating underprivileged and previously disadvantaged community members gives us great joy. Education plays such an important role in building the foundation for a successful economy, especially in the vital sectors where advanced maths and science knowledge and skill are required. We hope our contribution goes a long way in supporting this programme as it educates not only the learners, but the teachers as well. We couldn’t think of a better way to celebrate Youth Day 2017!”

Jenny Shutte, Wangthai