THE Ford Wildlife Foundation handed over a brand new Ford Ranger to the Wildlife and Environment Society of South Africa at the East London Ford dealership last week.
The Ranger will be used for Wessa’s Entrepreneurial, Empowerment and Employment of South African Youth or EESAY project in remote and rural areas in the Eastern Cape
The project, which started last year, currently aids 20 schools in the Eastern Cape and another 20 in Kwazulu-Natal.
The main aim of the project is to empower Grade 9, 10 and 11 pupils with business entrepreneurial skills in an effort to assist them once they have matriculated.
“Many youngsters in the areas come from disadvantaged backgrounds and will not have the funds to obtain tertiary education. Our aim is to help give them the skills they need to one day start their own businesses,” Wessa’s EESAY project co-ordinator for the Eastern Cape, Fuzile Dyosi said.
“By providing us with this vehicle, the Ford Wildlife Foundation is essentially making this project possible,” he said.
“I would not be able to do my job or get to many of the rural schools we work with without this Ranger [vehicle].”
Wessa’s EESAY project, although educational in nature, also teaches students how to contribute to a sustainable future through experiential learning.
The Ford Motor Company of South Africa (FMCSA) has been actively involved in the conservation of wildlife and ecosystems in South Africa and Sub-Saharan Africa for 30 years, and to date, has invested almost R40-million to support more than 170 conservation projects.
The Ford Wildlife Foundation was established in 2014 in an effort to facilitate FMCSA’s partnerships with various organisations and projects.
This year FMCSA have, through the Ford Wildlife Foundation, handed over Ford Rangers at a total value of R5.3-million to partner organisations to support their work in the field.
“The work Wessa does is really amazing and we’re very happy to have made this partnership,” said Ford Wildlife Foundation brand manager, Lynda du Plessis.