ZENNA MULLER

The Varsity Cup Pink Campaign started last Monday. The campaign comprises of a competition between the different universities in the Varsity Cup to raise money against women abuse. It has been running for three years with the slogan “Keep the Agro on the Field”.

Each year, the Varsity Cup donates R25 000 to homes for abused women and R100 000 to the campaign in general. A specific home is allocated to each university and, through the Pink Campaign, the university has to generate money for this home.

Tuks is currently the sponsor of the Mercy House. This is a transitional shelter for women in distress and has an extended house especially for babies and children. Neels Grobler, TuksRugby manager, told Perdeby, “You won’t believe how many ladies are abused. There is really a great need for these people.”

According to Grobler, the money raised is not just used to buy products for the home. It pays for activities for the women to participate in.

The campaign aims to create awareness. “There are a lot of houses in Pretoria with people in the same circumstances as these women, but people don’t know about them,” said Grobler. He continued that TuksRugby wants to get more students and community members involved in the campaign. “We really want to create a pink awareness. The smallest contribution can have the biggest impact.”

In the hope that the university will raise as much money as possible for the campaign, Tuks residences will participate in the competition.The residence competition will run until 25 February when FNB UP-Tuks play FNB Maties at Tuks Rugby Stadium. Each residence is given the opportunity to raise money for Mercy House and the residence who raises the most money will hand over a cheque containing the full amount of money raised by the university to the Varsity Cup. This will be televised during Tuks’s match against FNB Maties.

The Pink Campaign will run for all nine weeks of the Varsity Cup. A pink ball will be used in the last 20 minutes of each half of Varsity Cup matches. This is called the “rugby that rocks time”. If the home team scores a try during this period, Varsity Cup and campaign sponsors FNB, Steinhoff, Carling Black Label, Cell C and Spur will donate R2 000 each towards the team’s home. In addition to this, pink balls that have been signed by Varsity Cup players who have become Springboks and one ball signed by all the Varsity Cup captains will be auctioned to raise money.

During all the Varsity Cup matches at the Tuks sport grounds, prizes like iPads, cell phones and airtime will also be given to fans. A special “Tukkie song” especially written for TuksRugby and sung by a mystery celebrity will be revealed at the match on 25 February.

TuksRugby’s goal is to raise and hand over R150 000 against women abuse, Grobler said. For the last two days, Tuks has handed in the most money for their house, winning the campaign competition.

Image: varsitycup.co.za

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