The year 2020 will go down in history annals as a difficult one, littered with metaphorical hurdles, potholes and unfathomable losses. We have seen the economy wobble and spiral downwards to unprecedented lows, what with the Covid-19 pandemic having brought businesses to a grinding halt, resulting in a slew of job losses. Many have been left despondent, livelihoods gravely disrupted but, more tragically, countless lives have been lost to the pandemic.
While we might not be able to bring back those lives lost, we can all do so much to avoid callous deaths, by just following government health protocols. We need to pull together in order to overcome this scourge. We at TopGear SA have also realised that we need to do our bit to alleviate the strife experienced by many South Africans. As such, we devised a plan to partner up with Audi SA in order to brighten up a few faces and make a marked difference.
We took two Audi A4s - a 35 TFSI and 40 TFSI respectively - loaded each boot with goods, and headed to our respective charities to deliver them. These were Witkoppen Primary School in Fourways and Home Sweet Home in Vosloorus. Their respective needs were fresh paint and groceries. Simple, nondescript to many, but very profound to these aforementioned institutions.
Our trusty steeds are two, compact executives with a boot capacity measuring 460-litres, which made lightwork of lugging the paint buckets and groceries with great aplomb. Both are powered by a 2-litre, turbo charged, four potter powerplant with 110 kW and 270 Nm in the instance of the 35 TFSI and 132 kW and 320 Nm in the 40 TFSI. Both are mated to a 7-speed S tronic automatic gearbox and front-wheel driven. Having recently been facelifted, the models are also the first Audi products to debut the Connect app based concierge services, which came in handy during our quest and travels to transport those above mentioned essentials.
First port of call was a stop at the Witkoppen Primary School, which for an institution of learning nestled in one of the most affluent suburbs in Northern Gauteng, it was a rather disturbing sight to experience how derelict some of the main structures required some upliftment. Thankfully, the lick of paint we managed to sponsor will go a long way in giving the school facade a new lease of life. A warm welcome from the school principal, Mr Philimon Mashinini, and the SGB (School Governing Body), who also heaped praises upon our A4 sedan duo, was noteworthy from the moment we entered the school premises.
The vibrant chitty chatter of kids on recess, brought back some very fond memories of our former primary school years. Their faces full of life and their potential unbridled, we will certainly be lending a helping hand in the near future, and hope that more people can contribute towards disadvantaged schools and children in any form or shape possible. And having delivered the paint, we were off to Ekurhuleni, East of Gauteng to the township of Vosloorus. There we would visit an orphanage called Home Sweet Home, which we adopted in 2015 and that houses approximately 24 children of varying ages - from infants right up to High School going age.
As we arrive at the orphanage, we are warmly welcomed by the secretary, Mrs Sebolelo Dlakavu, before proceeding to handing over the boot full of groceries. For us it was the sheer, unadulterated gratefulness that we took away. It made us draw to the conclusion, that unequivocally, we can all do something in helping others in need from wherever we are.
It is on that parting shot that we thank Audi SA and this partnership to bring about change, hope, and inspiration to the many disenfranchised communities of our otherwise beautiful Mzansi. Right through our travels, the Audi A4s never skipped a beat, keeping us connected right through this journey but, more importantly, connecting us with those in dire need of daily essentials.