Locked Down and Locked out: Student Feature


#CapTheGap relief fund reaches the halfway mark, we wanted to thank everyone that has come forward to help us in bridging the digital divide to raise R3,328,330.50. Together we have impacted 387 final year and postgraduate students' lives to date for the better.

We also want to take the opportunity to speak to one of the resilient students, Akhona  who is currently doing her Honours in Political Science at the University of KwaZulu-Natal about how her education journey has been affected because of the lockdown. Akhona is one of the students who will be receiving a laptop in our third #CapTheGap distribution run that started on 17 July. 

Akhona gave us interesting insight into the harsh realities of many students in our country. This is what she had to say...

“I'm currently doing my honours in Political Science. Coming from a dysfunctional family, surrounded by an unhealthy environment during this COVID-19 pandemic has greatly affected my studies negatively. It's hard to study at home with limited hours seeing that I have other responsibilities I need to attend to when I am home, I am unable to study for 4 to 5 hours without any distractions. The virus itself has caused me so much anxiety and with that i can't focus on my studies without worrying if I'll survive.

Not having the necessary resources has negatively affected me because not only do I not have a laptop but I am from the rural areas where electricity runs out for 6 to 10 hours almost everyday and I fail to do my assessment on time using my phone. Not having a laptop has been such a great challenge because working with a phone is slow and not having money to buy data when it's finished has been a milestone on its own.

Online learning has been the only tool which is so hard for me because I don't have a laptop. Laptop and data will make things much better for me because I will be able to organise my work and be able to get my work done without a worry of my phone battery dying or data running out while I'm still busy trying to do my work. Receiving such assistance will not only help me academically but also mentality and that will result in my academic year being a successful one.

Political science does not only encourage one to be a critical thinker but also to be an active and responsible citizen, which similarly is what 'Mandela Day' is about. My dream is to change the world into a better place not just for me but also for others, to be a citizen who cares and loves the next person and also the environment. My goal is to make a difference in one's life and be able to put a smile on their face, to be able to look at someone's situation and walk a mile in their shoes so that I'll be able to help without counting or judging. To also partake in a life changing movement such as Mandela Day' and be able to provide more activities of this kind for more change, not just for fame and reward but because I'll be doing what I love and it has always been my dream.”
Akhona Zungu | UKZN Student | #CapTheGap recipient

The Remaining Digital Divide

There are still thousands of students like Akhona across the country who need your support. Make an urgent donation here to tertiary students in South Africa who are in desperate need access to their education through online learning.

Your donation made securely online here, will allow more students like Akhona to cross the digital divide and safely complete the academic year.