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26 January 2024
In a bid to change people’s lives, iSimangaliso has collaborated with Imbeleko Foundation to offer scholarship in support of a learner who attended an under-resourced primary school neighbouring the park. This came after a school participation in the Environmental Education and Awareness Programme by iSimangaliso. Imbeleko Foundation representative noticed an academic potential learner (Talent Tembe) who was vigorously participating in the programme. The programme aim to raise awareness on issues related to Biodiversity Conservation.
It targets all schools (Primary and High Schools) neighbouring the park from kwaSokhulu right up to Kosi Bay in Manguzi. This learner was selected and awarded a scholarship, he was in primary when selected. Now, he is doing grade 8 at Inkamana High School in Vryheid. His primary was Khiphinkunzi Primary School in Dukuduku, adjacent to the park.
Sindisiwe Mlambo (his mother), was very excited as her son will be attending a private school with rich history of good academic excellent through the partnership of iSimangaliso Wetland Park and Imbeleko Foundation. In the way to his new high school, his mother, representatives of iSimangaliso Wetland Park and Imbeleko Foundation accompanied him.
The scholarship covers school uniforms, stationary, meals, books, and boarding fees for his five-year period in high school. It will also cover transport cost during school holidays and for academic purposes. He is encouraged to perform well academically in order to keep the scholarship. The scholarship also includes several English and Afrikaans books for him to read in order to acclimatise in the new environment. iSimangaliso also has a tertiary support programme, which support prospective students in higher institutions. To date, it has supported more than 250 students across the fields of conservation, development, and tourism related studies. Meanwhile, there are 25 students supported by iSimangaliso who registered in KwaZulu-Natal Universities and one in Nelson Mandela University.
iSimangaliso Wetland Park Authority’s mandate is in three-folds, summarised as Conservation, Tourism, and Socio-economic development. The extent to which iSimangaliso is thriving in achieving the third pillar of its mandate has played out very well as it secured partnership with Imbeleko Foundation. Imbeleko Foundation is a Non-Governmental Organization (NGO) based in the rural community of Kwanyuswa in eNdwedwe. The organisation strives to empower children and youth through education in the province of KwaZulu-Natal at large. It provides holistic educational support for talented and hardworking learners who are vulnerable by poverty and scarcity of resources where many are raised by unemployed mothers, siblings, or grandparents.
iSimangaliso Wetland Park Authority will continuously work with different NGO’s, private partners, companies etc. to change people’s lives from surrounding communities and the notion of community upheaval towards the park.


Statement issued by iSimangaliso Wetland Park Authority
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Mr. Bheki Manzini
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