SAPOA raises whopping R40m bursary fund

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Neil Gopal, Amelia Beattie Nontokozo Nene and Pamela Snyman share a moment after the bursary announcement at the annual SAPOA International Convention and Property Exhibition in Durban. Neil Gopal, Amelia Beattie Nontokozo Nene and Pamela Snyman share a moment after the bursary announcement at the annual SAPOA International Convention and Property Exhibition in Durban.

The South African Property Owners Association (SAPOA) last month announced at its annual International Convention and Property Exhibition, that it had raised R40 million for its bursary fund to support young people planning real estate studies.

In efforts addressing transformation in the property industry coupled with aim of alleviating skills shortage in the country, SAPOA established a bursary fund scheme five years ago which has garnered success since its inception.

“Over the next four years, R40-million has been approved for 100 bursary students,” said Head of Stanlib Direct Property Investments and outgoing Sapoa President, Amelia Beattie. “We have surpassed our original 50 student goal,” adds Beattie.
 
The money was raised through a contribution by the Services SETA (SSETA) after negotiations with SAPOA took place over the last seven weeks.

Pamela Snyman, a Board member of the SSETA who represented the Chair of the SSETA at the Convention, said: “My wish and my goal is to see, through SAPOA, these students partaking in postgraduate degrees after the next four years”.
 
Passionate about real estate and education, Snyman highlighted that initiatives such as the SAPOA Bursary Fund is what the country needs. “We need skills today and we all need to stand up together and do something – we need to fly high and we need aspiration,” added Snyman.
 
Snyman said that through education, training and skills development, we can assist the youth in becoming independent as well as budding entrepreneurs. “They also need to be focused and relentless in their goals and dreams. The youth need to stay current and up to date as well as face challenges head on,” she said.
 
“About five years ago, the SAPOA Bursary Fund was initiated with the sole objective to create a fund in the commercial property industry for scholarships and bursaries for previously-disadvantaged individuals,” says SAPOA Chief Executive Officer, Neil Gopal.
 
“These students are taken through a four year BSc degree, with the fund fully managed at the SAPOA head office, hence removing the intensive administrative matters out of our member’s hands. The students are then placed with member companies by SAPOA on completion of their degree,” explains Gopal.
 
“The future of our nation depends on how we invest in its youth,” concluded Gopal.

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South African Property Owners Association (SAPOA)  |  SAPOA Convention and Property Exhibition  |  Neil Gopal  |  Amelia Beattie  |  Services SETA  |  Pamela Snyman  |  Nontokozo Nene