Bongumusa Madlala
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On 28 September, FLY@UP led its second semester edition of the highly anticipated thrift activation, which was held at Hatfield Campus Piazza from 10:00 to 14:00. The initiative started in 2022 as a partnership between FLY@UP
and the university’s Department of Student Affairs as a means of recycling and reusing old clothes to cater to students who could not afford to buy new clothes or those who wanted winter clothing items. The second semester began with the collection of clothing items using donation boxes scattered around the various points of entry on campus. The initiative encouraged students from all walks of life to go into their cupboards and donate any item of clothing they no longer needed.

The thrift activation saw many students flocking to the piazza in the hopes of getting themselves a stylish pair of trousers, jeans, shirts, sweaters, and any other items that were on display. Each student was limited to seven items of clothing to ensure that everyone got their fair share of the items on sale. The event also served as an opportunity to reduce the carbon footprint by keeping clothes out of landfills. This leads to less chemical pollution and reduced carbon emissions, which would lower the impact of climate change.

The initiative has helped many students regain their sense of identity. By providing them with clothes, students were able to attend classes and fit in with their peers. The difficulty to acquire new clothes made it hard for some students to attend classes, and it affected their studies. Some students ended up dropping out because of the pressure of not having new clothes and feeling that they did not belong at the university. This initiative has worked towards addressing these issues affecting students and has helped many students find a sense of belonging at the university, aiding them in continuing their studies.