M-Net does not only create magic on screen -- it also brings about important change behind the scenes with several M-Net Cares projects.
M-Net does not only create magic on screen—it also brings about important change behind the scenes with several M-Net Cares projects.
Key to the M-Net Cares Corporate Social Investment (CSI) objectives is the training and up-skilling in the film, television and advertising sector. To support this, M-Net TAG boasts an important category, called TAG 10. This provides an opportunity for young copywriters, art directors, producers and directors to break into the industry with the mentor- ship of experts in the field.
“M-Net TAG 10 aims to address imbalances in our creative industry and provide mentorship to talented young people. This will help towards building a future community of diverse voices with confident creatives who will be able to take the South African advertising, film and television industry to new heights,” says Koo Govender, M-Net Director: Corporate Marketing and Communications.
Another exciting way to contribute to the future of the industry is through the introduction of the M-Net TAG Bursaries, which are being awarded to students already in educational facilities in second and third year who are struggling to sustain their studies. Over 100 applications have been received and, in January 2012, five students will receive full funding for their studies.
However, TAG is only one initiative in the impressive M-Net Cares stable. Projects range from supporting South African literature and education (The children’s literature project, M-Net Naledi, and the M-Net Literary Awards) and developing budding filmmakers (TAG and New Directions) to promoting health and wellness (Best Cancer Awareness Project) and getting M-Net employees involved in refurbishing school libraries or partnering with organisations which inspire change.
There are also programmes contributing to the socio economic development through social development, job creation and entrepreneur development (Mzansi Magic Market Day formally called KTV Market Day).
- M-Net Naledi—This five-week reading course focuses on the development of phonic skills in learners; developing listening skills, focusing on the sounds of the language, and associating the sounds with letters to identify words so that they can be reproduced in written form. Through this initiative, M-Net Cares seeks to inspire a culture of reading from a young age. In 2011, M-Net Cares donated funds towards the literacy workshops for 1 000 primary school children as well as books.
- Mzansi Magic Market Day—The concept is simple: Kids aged 7-15 set up a stall at venues in major centres in the country and sell their wares to the public, or share their talent as performers with the public. The project was expanded to include youngsters from a broader segment of the South African community. Mzansi Magic Market Day also sup- ported Room 13—an after-school programme for underprivileged children, taking place in 16 schools.
- Time for Change (Staff volunteer programme)—An M-Net employee identified an aftercare facility in Eldorado Park which a community member was running free of charge from a shack. M-Net Cares donated a container to the project, which employees painted and helped convert into a work centre and computer room. A staff collection campaign amassed furniture, books and stationery for the children.
- Villa of Hope—Three smart guys from the children’s home, Villa of Hope, had nowhere to go once they had completed Grade 12. M-Net Cares transformed a dila- pidated building into a stylish home from where they could further their studies.
This article originally appeared in the Mail & Guardian newspaper as an advertorial supplement