Schoolteacher and marathon runner Irafaan Abrahams has donated shoes to the pupils of Bramble Way Primary in Bonteheuwel. Photo: Phando Jikelo African News Agency (ANA)
Schoolteacher and marathon runner Irafaan Abrahams has donated shoes to the pupils of Bramble Way Primary in Bonteheuwel. Photo: Phando Jikelo African News Agency (ANA)
Cape Town – An NPO’s donation of new school shoes for pupils at Bramble Way Primary in Bonteheuwel was almost dashed when a shooting outside the school’s gates sent children and their teachers running for cover.

Lace Up For Change (LU4C) selected the school for its campaign after Irafaan Abrahams and his son Hanaan raised R45 000 for school shoes when they took on their first Cape Town Cycle Tour together earlier this year.

Abrahams, a teacher at Liesbeek Primary, brought some of his Grade 7 volunteers along, handing out sandwiches, boeber, party packets, socks and 450 pairs of new school shoes to pupils in need.

Bramble Way acting principal Glynis Enfield said the 443 pupils came from neighbouring communities affected by gang violence and incidents of shooting had become commonplace.

“Some schools have fire drills, we have shooting drills and we do our best to keep our children safe. We are delighted with these donations because those who could not afford shoes at the beginning of the school year now already need new shoes.”

According to Enfield, the school promoted the philosophy of “paying it forward” thereby creating responsible young people.

Video: Dominic Adriaanse

“This campaign is special as my son came to me and said he wanted to do the Cycle Tour with me and help raise funds to buy shoes for underprivileged children,” Abrahams said. 

“In our last campaign at Thornton Primary, we donated 500 pairs of shoes, but found that children had little in the way of socks.”

Seeing the faces of the children light up as they received their new shoes was all the motivation he needed for the campaign, he said.

Hanaan said that the race was gruelling but for the most part worth it, seeing the benefits for Bramble Way Primary. He said he was ready for the next challenge to help more people.

The pair’s next challenge will be the 100km Festival of Running in Sea Point on July 20, where LU4C hopes to raise enough to buy shoes for another Cape Flats school in need.

LU4C chairperson Faizal Jacobs said the initiative will also attempt to raise R250 000 to build a multi-purpose hall for Liesbeek Primary.

For more information visit LU4C’s Facebook page or their website: www.laceupforchange.org.za

Cape Times