Two learners from Hoërskool Elsburg in Germiston have won the first ever Bridge Taxi Finance Matric Farewell Photo competition. The two friends, Olwethu Gazu and Tendamudzimu Mudau, received prize money of R1000 each, while their school received R10 000 to use exclusively for its Matric Farewell function that will be held in the first week of October.
“It was super exciting to hear that we’ve won the competition. I can just remember the smile on Olwethu’s face!” said Tendani at the prize handover ceremony at the school in September.
Tendamudzimu and Olwethu, both grade 12 learners and members of the matric dance committee, saw an advertisement for the competition on Facebook. Tendani, who had seen it first, sent it to Olwethu and told him they should both enter the competition, to double up their chances of winning some money for themselves and for their school’s matric dance.
Bridge Taxi Finance launched the inaugural competition in 2023 as part of its efforts to support education in South Africa. The competition invited matric and grade 11 learners across the country to take fun, exciting pictures of themselves and/or their friends in a Chinese-manufactured minibus taxi and post the picture on Facebook to enter.
“We at first struggled to find a Chinese-made taxi, but then one day we saw one outside the school. We were so excited, so we ran out and asked the owner if we can take some pictures,” said Tendamudzimu.
Bridge Taxi Finance wanted to celebrate matrics for the hard work they have put in to reach this milestone in their education.
“The aim was to inspire our school learners and give them something to enjoy and look forward to as they finish one of the landmark periods of their lives,” said Gary Sasman, Bridge Taxi Finance marketing manager.
“We believe a matric farewell is a special moment, as learners prepare for the next chapter in their lives. We want to celebrate those 12 long, hard years of studying to get to matric. And wish learners well with the final matric exams.”
The R10 000 prize money is meant to go towards the school’s matric farewell event. Each of the learners in the winner’s matric class also received a T-shirt with the school’s name printed on it.
“Our country is going through a very difficult time at the moment, and especially for our matrics, there is basically nothing to celebrate. We hope that this prize will give them a chance to relax, enjoy themselves and look back on their school career that lies behind them, celebrate their achievement up to this point,” said David Maarohanye, chairperson of the Hoërskool Elsburg School Governing Body.
Lubanzi Dlungwana from Westmead Secondary School in Pinetown was the runner-up. He won R1000 towards his school’s matric dance. All learners in his matric class also received a school T-shirt.
Bridge Taxi Finance is a Johannesburg-based company that works towards sustainable economic growth in South Africa by financing and sourcing Chinese-manufactured minibus-taxis. Taxis transport over 70% of South Africa’s workforce to and from work, making the industry an essential driver of the economy.