Students en route to a debate and public-speaking competition in Malaysia from left are Siyakholwa Ncobo ,19, Akhule Asange Sinethemba , 14, Ntyantyambo Funda ,15, and Abongile Naketsana ,17, with James Capstick-Dale who assisted in the fundraising drive to make the trip possible. Picture: Ian Landsberg/AFRICAN NEWS AGENCY (ANA)
Cape Town - A last minute scramble to get four young leaders to Malaysia has prompted Suzanne Ackerman-Berman, director of Transformation at Pick 'n Pay and Corporate Image director Tamra Capstick-Dale to assist.

Ackerman-Berman and Capstick-Dale stepped in with donations of R26000 and R10000 respectively to get the four pupils to Malaysia. They flew out on Saturday to participate in the debate camp in Borneo.

“I’m usually not a fan of supporting overseas trips, but I was so moved and inspired by these pupils.

“They have worked so hard. They were short of some money on Friday and then I offered to help them,” Ackerman-Berman said.

Ackerman-Berman gave each of the children a R500 gift hamper to use to raise money from.

“I thought they deserve a break, we all live in such a fast-moving environment and when I saw the story of these remarkable children I thought let me find out what I can do.”

Another contributor was seven-year-old James Capstick-Dale whose keynote address in four languages at the UCT Student Leadership Awards captivated readers.

James’s article was featured above the story of Ntyatyambo Funda, 14, from Sophumelela High School, Siyakholwa Ncobo, 19, from ID Mkhize High School, Abongile Maketsana, 17, from Fezeka High School and Akhule Norwele, 14, from Good Hope Seminary Girls’ High who moved the crowd at the African Future Leaders Hub Conference with their debating skills and were invited by the Malaysia Institute of Debate and Public Speaking to attend the debate camp.

Students en route to a debutante and public-speaking competition in Malaysia are from left Siyakholwa Ncobo ,19, Akhule Asange Sinethemba , 14, Ntyantyambo Funda ,15, and Abongile Naketsana ,17, with James Capstick-Dale ,7, who assisted in the fundraising drive to make the trip possible. Picture:Ian Landsberg/AFRICAN NEWS AGENCY (ANA)

James sent the Cape Argus a letter explaining that his mother read him the article about the young future leaders who were in need of funding.

Included in his letter were his personal savings of R192.40.

Capstick-Dale, James’s mother, also donated R1000 for each of the four pupils plus gave R10 000.

“Too often we speak about how we want to see the future, but nobody wants to invest in it. This was inspired by my little boy who asked what can we do to help and he brought out his savings. We need to build our young leaders,” Capstick-Dale said.

@MarvinCharles17

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Cape Argus