In honour of Heritage Month, Tsogo Sun’s Gold Reef City and Apartheid Museum hosted a full three-hour tour of the museum on 26 September for 115 Grade 9 learners and four educators from Johannesburg Secondary School in Homestead Park, to help them gain insight into the country’s history.
Gold Reef City (https://www.tsogosun.com/gold-reef-city-casino), which supports the Apartheid Museum (a not for profit Public Benefit Company), in collaboration with the Department of Education and the museum, have been hosting groups of 60 to 120 Grade 9 learners and their educators per visit from local Johannesburg schools on a weekly and now twice-weekly basis since 2011, as the apartheid years form a significant part of the Grade 9 curriculum.
The museum is experienced as a beacon of hope for the country, demonstrating how South Africa is coming to terms with its discriminatory past and working towards a truly liberated future for all South Africans.
Wayde Davy, Deputy Director of the Apartheid Museum, welcomes the ongoing school tours of the museum and thanks Tsogo Sun for its ongoing support. She adds, “It’s important for all South Africans to visit the museum, to learn about our history. This will help us understand the present and why it is the way that it is – and pave a way towards the future, ensuring that the pitfalls of the past are not repeated. Schools are given a tour of the museum which relates to the particular curriculum that they are busy with and gives them a visual and in-depth idea of what apartheid was like.”
Shanda Paine, Tsogo Sun’s Group CSI Manager, says, “With education at the heart of Tsogo Sun’s far-reaching CSI programme, sponsoring these visits to the Apartheid Museum to help learners gain a stronger understanding of the country’s past and how it impacts the present and even the future is an essential part of their learning.”
Over the years, thousands of Grade 9 learners, many from disadvantaged schools, have visited the museum in the sponsored school visits. Additionally, Tsogo Sun has invested a further R30 million in recent years in expanding the museum spaces and refurbishing the museum to ensure it maintains its status as a renowned and world-class tourist attraction in Gauteng.
Kiran Singh, GM of Gold Reef City, acknowledges the property’s privilege to be in a position to support and contribute to the success of the museum, which has become a South African icon since it opened in 2001. “We fully appreciate what the museum represents to our country and how vital it is to have an excellent display of 20th century South Africa events that so accurately brings the past to life. We are also glad to be able to sponsor and bus school children to the museum weekly, giving them a clearer picture of their history than they can glean from text books.”
Paine adds, “It’s important for our young people to fully appreciate the struggle that was fought for their freedom, and the impact it has on their rights and responsibilities to their generation and to future generations. We all have important roles to play in ensuring that, as Nelson Mandela said, ‘Never, never and never again shall it be that this beautiful land will again experience the oppression of one by another.’”
Tsogo Sun’s portfolio includes over 100 hotels and 14 casino and entertainment destinations throughout South Africa, Africa, the Seychelles and Abu Dhabi. For further information, visit tsogosun.com (https://www.tsogosun.com), follow on Twitter and Instagram @TsogoSun or like on Facebook /TsogoSun.