Graduation day is an essential occasion many graduands look forward to and go through great lengths to look picture perfect for, but on the contrary, the same event is quickly brushed off by a handful who are not fortunate enough to purchase new outfits for this special day.
It was against this backdrop that fourth-year Bachelor of Laws (LLB) student Nompumelelo Khaba initiated a clothing donation campaign as a means of ensuring that no graduand of the University of Zululand (UNIZULU) misses their graduation due to not having clothes to wear.
Khaba said the idea was birthed in 2018 after a conversation she had with a graduand who was contemplating not attending her graduation ceremony due to her family’s financial constraints. It dawned on Khaba that if there was one person going through this situation, there were surely others facing the same predicament.
“Graduation ceremonies are very important events in every student’s life. They create memories that one cherishes for the rest of their lives. At this time of the calendar year, I know that there are students out there who are already stressing about transportation fees or what to wear to their graduation because of financial constraints that are faced by their families. Such situations easily mess up a day that is supposed to be special to a student. By this initiative we are fighting that. We want everyone to have the same experience and celebratory feeling,” explained Khaba.
Khaba, who is also the chairperson of the UNIZULU Student Housing Committee (SHC), teamed up with her SHC colleagues to see this project to fruition. On 24 March 2019, she then took to Facebook, seeking clothing donations from her “friends”. Soon after her post, the donations flooded in. Within two weeks, the team had collected over 30 pairs of shoes and 80 clothing items from UNIZULU students, staff members and convocants as well as members of the general public.
The UNIZULU SHC has extended its gratitude to everyone who has heeded the call to make a positive change in the lives of some graduands.
UNIZULU graduands in need of clothing to wear during the upcoming UNIZULU Graduation Ceremonies are urged to get in contact with Khaba at the KwaDlangezwa Campus, East section on-campus residences, Block G: Room 14.
– Samkele Sokhela
Student Housing Committee members Nqobile Cele, Nompumelelo Khaba, Wendy Mbotho and Menzi Ntaka, champions of a clothing donation campaign, are encouraging everyone to stretch out their hands to graduands without clothes to wear during the upcoming UNIZULU Graduation Ceremonies.