On 16 May 2024, the inauguration of Mdantsane Jewellery School in East London took place.

Hosted by TIKA, the Turkish Cooperation and Coordination Agency, and TASCI, with the hard work and dedication of Ms Bathandwa Kwababa, the ceremony marked a significant milestone for the people of the Eastern Cape Province. TASCI recently achieved accreditation with the esteemed Mining Qualifications Authority to offer Level 2, 3, and 4 training, a historic first for the province.

Embodying the spirit of collaboration, a warm welcome to the diplomatic delegation and esteemed guests was extended by Mr V. Mabece, the District Director from the Department of Education. H.E. Ms Ayşegül Kandaş of Turkey, TIKA Coordinator, and representatives from the Premier’s office were among the honoured guests.

Addressing the guests, H.E. Ms Kandaş said:

“This is a sustainable project. TIKA undertakes many skills training projects, and we are so happy to be here together with the community.”

TASCI, a non-profit organisation that supports rural and township schools, has excelled once again. This time, through the funding support from TIKA and the Embassy of Switzerland, the organisation has used this generosity to purchase training equipment for jewellery manufacturing. The aim is to ensure that at least one person in each Mdantsane home acquires this skill.

The planning of the project commenced in 2023. After reviewing various schools in the region, the Department of Education suggested the school that was ultimately selected. When running at full capacity, the institution will cater for 300 students. Initially, it will start with 100 students, ranging in age from 16 to 60 years. Student allocation occurs through the Mining Qualifications Authority; after a selection test is written, the chosen students will be granted a bursary, which includes a stipend.

There was much jubilation as learners from a local high school sang and performed for the guests.

by Marion Kate