As South Africa and the rest of the world continue to grapple with the COVID-19 pandemic, it has become clear that there is an urgent need to establish programmes of increased social support to protect members of the UKZN community that come from poor and vulnerable households.

The University has launched the UKZN Hardship Fund that aims to address food insecurity and menstrual hygiene among students and staff. This response acknowledges that the economic impact of the COVID-19 pandemic is likely to be most severe for the vulnerable within the University community.

UKZN Vice-Chancellor and Principal, Professor Nana Poku, was the first to contribute to the fund, pledging a third of his monthly salary for the next three months. He called on all UKZN stakeholders including staff, students, suppliers, service providers, funders, alumni, the donor community, friends of the University and other loyal stakeholders to contribute.

As part of this initiative, UKZN will also launch a drive on all its campuses for staff and students to donate non-perishable goods such as foods, toiletries, sanitary pads and other items.

The University reiterated its call for students, staff and stakeholders to strictly comply with all the lockdown regulations. Stay at home and take the necessary precautionary measures to mitigate against the spread of the disease.

UKZN remains on high alert and its COVID-19 “War Room” and online portal continue to provide regular information and support via the website www.ukzn.ac.za including regular updates from the Department of Health; National Institute for Communicable Diseases (NICD); and the World Health Organization Africa COVID Region Office (WHO AFRO); as well as access to the University’s in-house clinical experts.

In order to maintain social distancing, you can donate securely using your credit/debit card, or you can do an instant EFT via your bank at www.donate.ukzn.ac.za

Words: Ndabaonline

Image: Supplied