Eugene Yiga spoke to Andi Norton, who coordinates the beneficiaries of The Cape Wine Auction, to find out about the upcoming event which takes place on 10 and 11 February at the Anthonij Rupert Wine Estate in Franschhoek.
What is the history of the auction?
Mike Ratcliffe [managing director at Warwick Wine Estate] visited the Napa Valley Auction in the US and was inspired to bring a similar format to the South African winelands. The first auction took place at Delaire Graff in February 2014.
How much money has it raised over the years?
To date over R31m has been raised. The Trust has supported more than 25 beneficiaries over three years.
How do you choose the beneficiaries?
All beneficiaries are registered NPO or NGO organisations. A thorough due diligence is conducted on the running of the organisations, including personal visits to the projects and regular meetings with the principle stakeholders. All beneficiaries must fulfil the mandate of the Trust, which is “supporting education in the South African winelands”. The Trust selects beneficiaries based on the impact they provide both within the learning space and with regards to lowering barriers to education. The Trust supports a Cradle to Career model of education, with strategic focus on certain milestones within that model. A primary focus of the Trust is the Grade 3 milestone where children must have learned to read in order to learn for the remainder of their school career.
What impact has the money had on the beneficiaries?
The impact has been enormous and has been not only in the Stellenbosch and Franschhoek valleys, but also as far afield as the Swartland and the Hemel-en-Aarde Valley. The Trust’s model of collaboration between its beneficiaries has resulted in children not only benefiting from improved education, but also receiving meals, psycho-social support, access to technology, after-school care, and assistance with transport. This model of collaboration between our beneficiaries has increased efficiency and decreased duplication, and is a model of which we are very proud.
What are your hopes for this year’s auction?
We hope that people will dig deep into their pockets knowing that 100% of all auction proceeds go to the beneficiaries. The Trust has developed a unique giving model which is resulting in real change on the ground in just three short years. This impact can become a wave of change in the winelands with continued support.
How can the public support the initiative?
By bidding at the Cape Wine Auction on 11 February, either in person or online at www.thecapewineauction.com; by making financial donations to the Trust directly or via Just Giving; and by contributing in-kind donations for items like books, computers, stationery, sports equipment, or even a school bus!
Eugene graduated from the University of Cape Town with distinctions in financial accounting and classical piano. He then spent over two-and-half years working in branding and communications at two of South Africa's top market research companies. Eugene also spent over three-and-a-half years at an eLearning start-up, all while building his business as an award-winning writer.
Visit www.eugeneyiga.com, follow @eugeneyiga on Twitter, or email to say, um, hello.
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