The Association of Mineworkers and Construction Union (AMCU) – through its Marikana Massacre AMCU Trust Fund wing – and Horizon Educational Trust partner for change in a landmark R1, 5 million sponsorship.

The Marikana Massacre AMCU Trust Fund (AMCU Trust Fund) and the Horizon Educational Trust (HET) have partnered to transform the lives of five marginalized children. Their common objective has facilitated five private school education scholarships from Grade 8 – 12 at Horizon International High School in Turffontein, Johannesburg. These children originate from within the AMCU constituency across the country and hail from Mpumalanga and KwaZulu Natal provinces respectively.

As part of its mission, the AMCU Trust Fund has sought out partnerships with both commercial entities and civil society organisations, to offer relief to the marginalised and vulnerable in several areas of need. One such partner is the Horizon Educational Trust (HET). Founded in 1998, the HET has played a significant role in the Educational, Cultural and Social Fields for the past 19 years.

Horizon International High School is one of the South African schools founded by the HET. It is based in Johannesburg’s Turffontein and prides itself in developing a generation with deep knowledge of Mathematics, Science and Technology to the level of global standards. The High School has recorded an exceptional 100% Matric Pass and Exemption Rate for several years running – including 2016.

AMCU President Joseph Mathunjwa is thrilled by this endeavour that will uplift, empower and expose the pupils to a life-changing educational experience.

“This is a milestone partnership which is a forerunner to many more that the AMCU Trust Fund is in the process of forging. The union of the two parties will eradicate the brutal replacement system that sees adult children of mineworkers often substitute family members as employees in the mines because their professional options are limited. The emphasis on Mathematics and Science in academic tuition will usher in a new generation of miners’ children who will not fall victim to a multi-generational poverty cycle. They will instead supersede their original educational prospects and thus be empowered to pursue professions such as mine engineering – rather than being relegated to working as rock drill operators,” President Mathunjwa said.

President Mathunjwa mentioned that the recipients of the scholarships are only the precursors of many more to benefit from the partnership that the education pillar of the AMCU Trust Fund has forged. The parties have committed to providing a solid support structure for the children throughout their high school career at Horizon International High School; while maintaining an open communication channel with the guardians of the students.

“Horizon High School and the Horizon Educational Trust offer all children a quality education with a wholistic approach of moral, physical and educational well-being. This is done irrespective of race, religion or background. It is thus with great honour that the Horizon Educational Trust partner with the AMCU Trust Fund in ensuring a better life for these students,” Horizon Educational Trust Director General IIhami Demirtas.

The fruitful association between HET and trade union AMCU will culminate in the transformation of the lives of the beneficiaries. Through the school’s focus on Mathematics and Science; the scholarship will empower the pupils to address the current shortage of skills in these fields in the country and empower these children to become expert professionals in their chosen fields.