In an effort to contribute to the local community Bloy has recently launched our very first Corporate Social Investment (CSI) project. Bloy is sponsoring Sydney Ngcakana, from Thembalethu, who is on a quest to better himself by furthering his education in Botany at the Nelson Mandela Metropolitan University (NMMU) Saasveld Campus.
Over the past 17 years, Volunteers at the Southern Cape Herbarium – Garden Route Botanical Garden, have catalogued an impressive collection of the region’s indigenous vegetation – a number of which are now extinct or extremely rare. Under the guidance of Yvette van Wyk, Herbarium Curator, Sydney had learnt a great deal about regional botany, originally being a gardener at the Botanical Garden. Yvette was instrumental in teaching him how to recognize plant families, identify specimens, catalogue their display in collections, and digitize their scientific I. D. via the internet into the Botanical Society database. This allowed him to transform his passion into a full-time job in conservation at the herbarium.
His knowledge is now such that he is tutoring some NMMU students in Botany practice, while himself deciding to study through formal university programmes in order to attain the diploma required to become a Curator.
Bloy has been funding his university tuition since 2011 and have recently equipped him with a laptop. “I want just to confirm that I got the laptop from Bloy. I was there Tuesday morning at Bloy. It is a great pleasure to see friendly staff at Bloy and welcomed me with warm hands. The laptop is perfect right with all the necessary things that I will need to use. I say again and again thank you for your support and Bloy.” Originally Afrikaans speaking, Sydney has taught himself basic English since matriculation. University courses however, require a much more formal set of language skills. Bloy has funded a private tutor in this regard, further promoting Sydney’s tertiary progress. Much improvement has been noted by those working closely with Sydney with subjects being passed over the 65% mark.
“CSI is not just about companies providing funds, but more importantly, it involves hands-on help and support”, says Bloy Managing Director, Peter Bloy. “It’s important that we strive towards long-term impact in our communities. We are proud to help Sydney in his striking effort to uplift himself”, he adds.
Bloy would like to thank the Garden Route Botanical Gardens Board of Trustees for their support and cooperation shown. Sydney is permitted to work part-time, even out of business hours. This allows him enough income to sustain his family while studying. We would also like to express our gratitude to Dr Steve du Toit, Head of Conservation at WESSA Western Cape (Wildlife & Environment Protection Society of South Africa), who monitors Sydney in various subjects, from Animals to Law.
If you are interested in receiving more information on this initiative or would like to lend your support, please contact Peter Bloy on firstname.lastname@example.org