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Community Projects

Micheala’s journey 

My name is Micheala Dampies I am 18 years old.

I started GCU Rope skipping in 2007/2008 as a beginner and then qualified for provincial competitions and then there after qualified for national competitions which were held in Pretoria. I then got my Western Province colours in Rope Skipping.

Pretoria. The Backpack sponsored our trip to Pretoria which was absolutely incredible to have experienced. For my first time competing outside of Cape Town I achieved 2 Gold Medals and one bronze medal.

I belong to the project of GCU for approximately 8 years and have won more than 40 medals in total including Gold, Silver and Bronze. And have travelled to Durban, Johannesburg and have had the opportunity to fly on a plane for the first time EVER!!!!!

I Matriculated in 2014 and am Currently Studying Human Resource Management Thank you to the Backpack for sponsoring my fees to be able to study further. The Backpack has helped me a lot as well as the community project. I am one of many children that belongs the project that can say that The Backpack has done an incredible job helping us to see and experience various things. For example I had my first amazing tour with Hotspots which was extremely amazing. I never thought that I would ever get the opportunity to see Elephants, Cheetahs, Tigers or even Snakes in real life. It was really a beautiful experience.

I started working at The Backpack when I turned 16 years old and I have been so blessed to be mentored by so many amazing women that teach me so many news things every day.

I am honoured to be part of the project of GCU and The Backpack. At the moment I am also tutoring and coaching at the community project as part of giving back to the project for all the years they have help me achieve what I never thought I ever would achieve.


Bursary Scheme

By donating your key deposit, you contribute to our Bursary Fund, which allows our staff to access this fund for their own studies or studies of their children or grandchildren.  With your help, we have paid for Sbu (Sports administration 2nd year), Olwethu (3rd year Marketing) and Michaela (First year Human Resources) to go to University in 2015; Thando’s son Nathi to attend Grade R at a private school in the city; Portia’s daughter Rosemary to attend Grade R at an inner city school; Primrose’s son’s Grade 7 school fees; Cathy’s son’s Grade 4 school fees and for Caroline’s daughter Yonela to go to Cape College (First year administration).  Michaela completed Grade 12 and is going on a safari.  We are so proud of our staff and their kids and thank you to all our guests who have made this possible.  This Bursary Fund is accessible to all our staff and is transparent.


The Backpack Community project

The Rope Skipping Project

Even though there are some girls kick­ing the foot­ball with Mario, to cater for girls an extra activ­ity was added to the project — jump rope! This is a new sport craze sweep­ing over the youth of Cape Town. The Back­pack has spon­sored 12 girls who have made it into our Provin­cial Team. Sbu the coach has been an inspi­ra­tion to the girls attend­ing this pro­gram. He him­self is a world champion.


The Backpack Rope Skipping

The Soccer Project

In an area of Cape Town noto­ri­ous for gang­sters, drug- and alcohol-​related prob­lems, one local — Mario van Niek­erk — began a soc­cer pro­gram designed to keep kids off the streets and in school. Mario’s GCU Acad­emy was born. In 2007, we met up with Mario and intro­duced an after-​school home­work, tutor­ing, and life skills pro­gram; in a neigh­bour­hood where lit­er­acy is 24% and the aver­age child drops out of school at 12 years old. Together with our guests, we have donated over R1000000.00!


The Backpack GCU Academy

Val­lies Stitch and Bitch Program

With the Val­lies Stitch and Bitch Pro­gram, we have col­lec­tively knit­ted over one hun­dred blan­kets for AIDS orphans at Baphumelele Crèche in Khayelitscha Town­ship. We have old age homes con­tribut­ing to this project with their fan­tas­tic knit­ting skills. If you can knit plain, come along, relax in the lounge or bar at The Back­pack, and knit a square or two! If you can’t knit but would like to con­tribute to keep­ing the lit­tle ones snug, we gladly accept dona­tions of wool.


The Backpack Knitting

Thank you for choos­ing to make a difference

Been trav­el­ing a while and got a pile of unwanted clothes in your back­pack? Donate them at recep­tion and we’ll sell them on your behalf, with the pro­ceeds going to The Soc­cer and Jump Rope Project.

Whether it’s your time, your money, or both, you can be guar­an­teed the sat­is­fac­tion and ful­fill­ment of help­ing out chil­dren and peo­ple in need! By under­stand­ing, address­ing and help­ing the social needs of the eco­nom­i­cally and socially dis­ad­van­taged com­mu­ni­ties of South Africa, we are able to work towards a just soci­ety in which all peo­ple get to share in the wealth of the coun­try.

Choose to make a difference!


Community project The Backpack