Feenix, the crowdfunding platform established to help students in need to raise funds for their studies, has raised R1.09 million in its first month of operation.

The site was launched by Standard Bank in June to allow individuals and enterprises to securely donate money directly to students to help them complete their studies.

Feenix forms part of the solutions the private sector is offering to tackle the #FeesMustFall debacle.

Standard Bank has undertaken to be the financier and go-to-market partner of the Feenix Trust, which has been established to retain and manage funds from donors. It has committed to the ‘project for 36 months, or until the project is self-sustaining.

“Thank you to all our donors, individuals and corporates, who have come on board to show their support in improving access to tertiary education for students across the country and, in so doing, change the face of economic transformation in South Africa,” said Jayshree Naidoo, Interim CEO of the Feenix Trust, and Head of the Standard Bank Incubator.

“As a proudly digital bank Standard Bank wants to play a meaningful role in improving access to education. We see the power of crowdsourcing as a viable solution to boosting educational funding channels and are very proud of what has been achieved in just one month. We look forward to far more success via this initiative in the future,” Naidoo added.

Corporates can donate from their skills development or CSI budget and will receive a Section 18A tax certificate. It also counts towards B-BBEE scorecards.

“Helping fund students through their studies and enabling them to reach their “nexts” in life is one of the best ways to make a real difference to our country’s economic future – but you only need to visit the Feenix platform to see how much work is left to do, Naidoo said. 

“Therefore, as we celebrate Mandela Month – an icon who believed in the power of education – we would like to call on all corporates and individuals to assist us in raising enough to see 67 students fully funded before month-end and beyond.”