Three Durban beauties and semi-finalist of the Tammy Taylor Mrs South Africa pageant rolled up their sleeves for charity last Wednesday, 23 May, in Ballito when they deposited tons of paper in the paperbank for recycling. The initiative is aimed at raising funds for the North Coast Courier Orphan Fund and was done in partnership with Mpact Recycling.

The Orphan Fund was set up with the purpose of channelling money raised to non-governmental organisations that specialise in caring for orphans and vulnerable children within the newspaper’s circulation area.

Since its launch in July 2003, the Orphan Fund has raised and distributed over R3.4 million. Speaking to Durban North News, Dr Nqobile Sithole, a medical practitioner from Somerset Park in uMhlanga, said that they took part in the initiative as part of the Tammy Taylor pageant. “The Orphan Fund is doing such an amazing work that positively impact a lot of lives and I am happy to be part of something that will bring change to the community,” Sithole said.

Before embarking on the recycling drive, the ladies asked community and businesses to contribute recyclable waste to be deposited in the paperbank.

Talking about her journey in the competition, Sithole said it has been phenomenal in a way that she has learnt so much and it has afforded her the platform to promote issues that are close to her heart including women empowerment.

Greenwood Park Natisha Makka echoed Sithole’s sentiments by saying that the pageant was a ‘female empowerment movement’ which is all about giving South Africa’s unsung superwomen a chance to get support and give input.

“It is a platform to reach a new level of success and visibility on a global stage. Being involved in the recycling drive also gives me a chance to do my bit. The fund does phenomenal work and encapsulate the spirit of Ubuntu,” Makka said. Fellow semi finalist and Durban North resident Jo-Anne Barnwell said that she believes that everyone can initiate change.

The ladies are going through months of workshops, mentorship programmes, interviews and will raise funds for Women4Women South Africa as part of the competition. Only 25 women will be selected and announced as finalists at the Charity Ball taking place at Emperors Palace on 29 June.

Mpact Recycling’s Danielle King said that they have partnered with the Tammy Taylor pageant for the fourth year and they are also full sponsor of the competition. “The KZN semi finalists are supposed to generate two tons each for the fund. “We are extremely excited to be part of such a big event. The fund initiative helps the community to get additional income.”