E-waste project assists struggling Soshanguve School

26 April 2018

The roll-out of a Tshwane University of Technology driven e-waste pilot project at various universities of technology in the country will ensure that valuable materials contained in e-waste are extracted to benefit the community. In addition, it will ensure that hazardous components are disposed correctly. 

Lesiba Teffo, principal of the Soshanguve Technical High School, (centre back) welcomed the donation of 20 laptops to the school as part of an e-waste recycling pilot project. With him is a group of marticulants who will benefit from the donation. 

Braam Mouton, senior lecturer at the Faculty of Engineering and the Built Environment’s Department of Electrical Engineering, conducted the pilot study in e-waste recycling to, among others, create employment and make communities safer.

One of the beneficiaries of the Tirelo Bosha Container-based Community Enterprise pilot project is the Soshanguve Technical High School. This free education school, that mainly caters for learners from disadvantaged backgrounds, received 20 laptops through the project. Since the majority of parents are unemployed and cannot contribute to school fees, this will boost the school’s educational resources.

The pilot project was initiated by the South African Technology Network (SATN) and implemented through a community engagement programme with TUT and its community business partners. 

According to Braam, the extraction of these materials will create employment and stimulate enterprise development in the area. “Recycling is a good way to make and save money, but more importantly, the environment is protected. E-waste donations will be recycled and profits will be returned to the community,” he said.  

The school principal, Lesiba Teffo, said the donation really came to their rescue.

“All our computers were stolen last year. The biggest challenge for matriculants was to write their computer exams without access to computers. We will make these laptops available to learners during class time and ensure they are kept in a safe place after school,” Teffo added.

Xolile Molete, a teacher in Electrical Technology (Digital) said: “We had to rely on learners using their cellphones to complete computer assignments and research. However, without computers not all learners were able to complete assignments in time.” Molete added that financial constraints also limited learners’ Internet access.

An Electrical Technology learner, Ishamel Phiri, is convinced that the use of the laptops will help him to improve his academic performance and assist with catching up on his outstanding assignments. “I want to become a pilot and these laptops will help me with applications.”

  • The Belgian Government sponsors the Tirelo Bosha Container-based Community Enterprise pilot project. It is implemented as a service delivery improvement project of the Department of Public Service and Administration (DPSA), in partnership with the Department of Environmental Affairs (DEA).

For more information on the Tshwane University of Technology, please contact Willa de Ruyter, Corporate Affairs and Marketing.
Tel: +27 12 382 5352   Email: deruyterw@tut.ac.za