In 1996, Cyril Ramaphosa began supporting a small number of disadvantaged students with bursaries, so that they can attend university. He did this by donating the money he earned through his various public speaking engagements. These acts of kindness and generosity officially became the Cyril Ramaphosa Education Trust (CRET) in 2000
Some 21 years after Cyril sponsored his first bursary, a spectacular (and growing!) hall of fame exists, filled with CRET‐enabled graduates, whose dreams of becoming highly-qualified professionals have come true.
HOW TO APPLY
All students attend intensive holiday work experience programmes twice a year, where they get additional soft skills training and networking opportunities.
Students are exposed to team‐building activities, personal development and, most importantly, a supportive and cohesive family environment, which is where we believe the CRET programme really shines.
CRET encourages students to embrace the ethos of “paying it forward”. They are reminded to never forget where they came from, and to consider the multitude of others in need. To ensure a culture of social responsibility is ingrained in our students, we set them up to work at selected welfare organisations during their holidays, while they are also tasked with distributing donations of clothes, food and other essentials within the disadvantaged community.
Furthermore, senior CRET students and alumni take on the roles of mentors to new students, while others contribute financially to the programme. Some have even gone on to implement their own corporate bursary programmes.
The story of CRET is not only one of incredible youngsters growing into incredible individuals, but one of how change can affect the future skill set of the South African youth through support, mentoring and nurture.
CRET has proven how seemingly out-of-reach dreams can come true through providing support to the disadvantaged youth.
Here is what some CRET alumni have had to say about the programme, in their own words: