Global fund management company, Oasis Group Holdings has donated R1 million to Stellenbosch University (SU) at an official handover ceremony held at Die Stal on Thursday (9 December 2021).
The funds will be distributed equally between the Faculty of Economic and Management Sciences and the Faculty of Law to support disadvantaged students with financial needs to successfully complete their studies.
Oasis has a strong investment track record as an investment manager with expertise in Shari'ah compliant and conventional collective investment schemes, global mutual funds, retirement funds and large segregated institutional funds.
The company, through its Oasis Crescent Fund Trust, has over the years donated millions to worthy causes in the areas of healthcare, social development, disaster relief and education. Its funding of education has been focused into three key areas – early childhood development, primary and secondary education and tertiary level funding. They have so far donated funds to a few higher education institutions.
This is the first time the Oasis Group has donated funding to SU but not the last time, according to Nazeem Ebrahim, Deputy Chairperson of Oasis.
“This donation is only the beginning. Over the next few years, we intend to enter into a relationship with Stellenbosch University which we hope will grow and develop into other mutually beneficial opportunities," said Ebrahim who with his brother Mohamed Shaheen Ebrahim, chairperson of Oasis, handed over the R1 million cheque to the University.
Rector and Vice-Chancellor of SU, Prof Wim de Villiers, thanked the Oasis Group for supporting the university.
“So many of our students have great academic potential but struggle financially. Your gift to these two faculties will help us to bridge that financial gap and to produce graduates who will be able to contribute meaningfully to the success of South Africa."
Prof Ingrid Woolard, Dean of the Faculty of Economic and Management Sciences, said the donation is the culmination of discussions with the company that started three years ago.
“There was certainly a little bit of interest then, and what I took from that meeting is that Oasis works very cautiously. The response was 'let's build the relationship in a more gradual fashion' and I think today is the start of that. We are very grateful that you heard us and that you are interested in having an ongoing relationship with us. This donation will certainly make a difference to our postgraduate students."
Prof Nicola Smit, Dean of the Faculty of Law, said the faculty is extremely grateful for this wonderful gift.
“We are fortunate at Stellenbosch that we have wonderful facilities for our students, so it gives us a little bit of freedom to use these types of gifts where it can really make a huge impact. And that is the undertaking that we give to you today – we plan to use these funds where it can have the furthest reach and make the best impact for our students.”
Photo: Prof Ingrid Woolard, Prof Wim de Villiers, Mohamed Shaheen Ebrahim, Nazeem Ebrahim and Prof Nicola Smit. (Photographer: Henk Oets)