Four winners of the Tsogo Sun Duke of Edinburgh Cup were crowned today (Monday 11 April) following an intense and exciting day of play on the Rockland and Woodmead courses of the Johannesburg Country Club, winning an exclusive chance to participate in the élite Duke of Edinburgh Cup 2016 World Finals in England in October.
The tournament represents the South African leg of the Duke of Edinburgh Cup, which is played annually in 10 different countries with the aim of raising funds to benefit young people in need. Tsogo Sun has been associated with the tournament for more than 11 years and has raised over R8 million for charitable causes over the years.
The big prize for the winning pair on each course is a royal treat for golfers and includes a trip to London from 2 to 7 October with hotel accommodation, entry to the 36-hole Duke of Edinburgh Cup World Final at the Buckinghamshire and Mill Ride Golf clubs, an invitation to play at the Royal Household Golf Club at Windsor Great Park, and attendance at a royal champagne reception and prize-giving dinner in the state apartments of Windsor Castle.
This year, the Tsogo Sun Duke of Edinburgh Cup was by invitation only to selected Tsogo Sun Rewards cardholders from the group’s 14 casinos as a way to thank their loyal card members for their support.
“Hearty Tsogo Sun congratulations to our four Duke of Edinburgh Cup winners – they all played a great game and earned their places at the World Final in October where I have no doubt they will do South Africa proud,” says Noëleen Bruton, Group Marketing Director at Tsogo Sun.
The aim of the Duke of Edinburgh Cup tournament is the upliftment of vulnerable children and this year Tsogo Sun has once again linked the event with a corporate social investment initiative that will have a profound effect on the lives of about 5 000 children in the Johannesburg region.
Bruton explains, “In considering our CSI options through the Tsogo Sun Duke of Edinburgh Cup, we aligned our initiative with our corporate CSI strategy, which is aimed at the development of youth through education, as well as with the needs of communities in the areas where we operate.
“We’ve all seen the devastating effects that the drought has wreaked on this country over the past year – and invariably it is vulnerable children who suffer the most. No access to water means sanitation and hygiene practices collapse and diseases occur, it means cooking becomes all but impossible, it means sourcing water is a hardship, and often a costly one at that.”
With this reality in mind, Tsogo Sun identified three primary schools – one in Diepsloot which is close to Montecasino, one in Munsieville on the West Rand, close to Silverstar, and one in Johannesburg South, close to Gold Reef City – that all serve disadvantaged communities and that Tsogo Sun is working with through its Tsogo Sun sports and arts academies.
The group is starting the process of installing fully integrated water systems in each of these schools that will ensure that the schools have water when the water supply is cut off for any reason, and will impact around 5 000 learners in the three schools.
Up until now, if the schools had no access to water, they either battled through the day and risked sanitation crises and health issues or they sent the children home and missed valuable learning time. Adds Bruton, “These water systems at each of the schools will ensure constant access to clean water even when there is no municipal water supply.”
The water systems entail two 10 000-litre Jojo water storage tanks at each school, a rainwater harvesting system to collect rain water from the school buildings roof, additional tank filling through the municipal water supply, and a water purification system to ensure water is safe to drink at all times. The water tanks are being installed adjacent to toilet blocks at the schools to ensure sanitation and hygiene standards are maintained.
“We’re told that a 10 000-litre tank provides water for at least 1 000 flushes. With two tanks in each school, that will make a significant difference to the schools. We also know that a number of the community schools provide cooked meals for their children and that for many of them, that meal is the only one they will have in a day. Providing a clean water supply will ensure those meals are cooked.
“It’s a privilege for Tsogo Sun to be able to partner with the prestigious Duke of Edinburgh Cup each year, offering the participants a truly memorable experience, as well as with the three schools, providing such critical support to their efficient and effective operation. Our thanks goes to all the participants for the role they played in contributing to this ‘water for schools’ initiative, which is an exceptional example of something I believe in strongly – that of doing good while doing good business,” says Bruton.