The schoolboys of the Safire Scholarship Programme recently had a day full of thrills, high above the ground. The outing, which the boys shared with Safire CEO Pierre Bekker and Ali Kingsley of the Amathuba Foundation, started with a helicopter flight to the Karkloof Valley, where the group kitted up for an exhilarating zipline experience through the indigenous forest with the Karkloof Canopy Tours crew.

Safire Insurance embarked on its scholarship programme in 2014, and in March this year, the Amathuba Foundation joined as a programme partner with the aim of facilitating customised additional funding and providing personalised mentorship to those scholarship boys who are at high school. 

Ali Kingsley says, “The Safire-hosted Wellness Day for the nine scholarship learners was aimed at getting us together to touch base, build relationships and have some fun together. There was plenty of adrenaline, lots of laughter, and great connections and team-building as the boys ziplined through the Karkloof forest and enjoyed lunch together. It was a wonderful opportunity for the Safire representatives to meet some of the Amathuba mentors who are walking the road with these boys. After all the excitement, the boys returned to their respective schools with great memories, sound advice from Pierre Bekker, and a sense of ‘family’ all round.”

Safire - Scholarship boys at Karkloof Canopy Tours - group shot with Pierre and pupils only - Oct 2022

Safire’s scholarship programme, one of many community and social-development initiatives that the Safire Group has started over the years, focuses on providing quality, multi-faceted education for outstanding youngsters from disadvantaged backgrounds by facilitating their education at some of the country’s leading schools. The scholarship programme initially worked solely with the well-respected Pietermaritzburg primary school Cordwalles Preparatory School for Boys, but in time also encompassed top-notch high schools such as Maritzburg College, Michaelhouse and Durban High School as the earliest learners of the programme moved through the grades.

The scholarship process begins with promising Grade 4 pupils passing stringent interviews to find youngsters with all-round potential. “We don’t simply look at the academic performance of the prospective scholarship beneficiaries,” says Pierre Bekker. “We focus on finding suitable learners who have the ability to become the leaders of tomorrow, so we also consider their personalities and their sporting and artistic talents. We believe that leadership is not only about achieving top marks for your studies. Some of the world’s greatest leaders and most successful people did not excel at school or have a tertiary education.”

Ali Kingsley adds, “Safire’s scholarship programme is all about investing in people’s lives, knowing that the return on this kind of investment is immeasurable. The Amathuba Foundation is proud to be working with Safire to ensure the success of this far-reaching programme that has an incredible impact on these young people’s lives and futures.”

Please email Ali Kingsley at for information about how to contribute towards these outstanding youngsters becoming tomorrow’s leaders, and visit to discover more about the Amathuba Foundation. Amathuba is able to offer points for Socio-economic Development and Skills Development spend and can also issue Section 18A tax certificates for donations.