Doctor celebrates birthday by donating sanitary pads and PPE
Many high school learners miss school because they do not have sanitary pads during their menstrual cycle. Missing out on education has devastating long-term effects, not only on the learner’s educational development but also on their mental well-being.
COVID-19 has made the situation worse because people must also buy protective equipment such as masks and sanitisers. It becomes difficult for learners whose parents have lost their jobs during the lockdown furthermore female learners find themselves struggling to buy sanitary towels.
Dr Amogelang Manganyi decided to partner with the Nhlanhla Tshabalala Foundation in celebration of his 29th birthday, to encourage learners to stay in school by donating over 100 packets of sanitary pads and personal protective equipment (PPE) to Grade 11 and 12 learners at Thaba Jabula Secondary School in Soweto.
Dr Manganyi, born in Hammanskraal, is a medical doctor at Steve Biko Academic Hospital in Tshwane and the team doctor for Moroka Swallows Football Club. He is also the founder of Medihealth Solutions—a company focused on assisting at-risk youth with quality, stigma-free affordable healthcare in metropolitan areas.
Dr takes heed to disadvantaged school needs
“I chose a public school because many of these schools don’t have the budget to assist learners with what is needed and parents aren’t always able to afford these things as well,” Manganyi says.
He is aware of the socio-economic effects of the COVID-19 pandemic and how it has made it difficult for so many—to the point of not affording pads or PPE—to protect themselves at school.
“I have been treating COVID-19 patients and I see the effects of this pandemic. With the economic crisis, we are facing, assisting where we can, should be the ethos of all individuals. Learners should not be worried and pre-occupied with not having sanitary pads or PPE, they should be learning,” Manganyi adds
Speaking to Stokvel Talk, Relebohile Thahane, a Grade 12 learner at the school says she is grateful to receive the care packages as gifts, especially from a man, during a time when South African women are brutally killed by men.
“It’s such a necessary package for so many of us who have to choose between buying sanitary pads or paying for transport. It’s a thoughtful gift”. The fact that Dr Manganyi took time out of his busy schedule to come and deliver these packages himself means a lot.”
Nhlanhla Tshabalala, the founder of the Nhlanhla Tshabalala Foundation, says Manganyi’s birthday gifts uplifted the learners, it is always good for learners to feel that there is someone that cares about their health and well-being.
“It couldn’t have come at a better time as South Africa deals with COVID-19. The packages will help the learners to stay safe from the virus, and the sanitary pads will help restore their dignity.”