Luke Smith supported himself through matric, living on only R2,500 per month, his community stepped in to help him, and today we have the best update!
Athlone, Cape Town – An Athlone teen was overwhelmed with love from his community during 2019. The teen, Luke Smith, who’s identity was originally kept secret for his safety, lost his mother when he was seven. A few years later, his father abandoned him, and he was left with only his grandmother.
Sadly, in 2018 she was struck by a car on her way to a local shopping mall and passed. Luke was left to fend for himself. Thankfully, his mother had left money in a trust for him, which has supported him through his last year of school, alone.
The trust paid his school fees and pays out R2,500.00 to him every month. With this money, he was able to support himself.
“At the end of the month I first pay my burial policy. Then I buy electricity, food and pay for my school transports.
“My auntie helps me sometimes with food. My school fees are paid upfront by the trust and if I need clothes, I must make an application.
“Sometimes if I have some money left then I treat myself to a movie, but I have a strict budget,”
With his strict budgeting, he was unable to spend the money needed to attend his matric dance last year. His neighbour felt it was wrong for him to pass on such a significant life experience and told him his Ouma would have wanted him to attend the dance.
The community then started working on getting the teen to his dance. One of his neighbours said he was shy, so wouldn’t ask for a date, so she encouraged her daughter to attend the dance with him. In the end, Luke got to go to his dance thanks to the love and support from his community.
Another, Natasha Landers was a driving force behind getting him to the dance. She organised and managed all the monies and donations received to make his day special. Natasha continued to watch him over the remaining year and was present when he picked up his matric certificate. She can be seen embracing him in the title image.
This year he is yet another matriculation success story. Luke was joined by his community at the local police station where he received his results. When Luke announced that he had passed with a Bachelor pass, the crowd went wild. They hugged him and celebrated his success.
The money-wise teen applied to UWC last year, to do a business degree. He is unsure if his trust will cover his university expenses, but he plans to follow his dreams. He wants to open a bakery someday to pursue his passion for baking.
“I love making biscuits and fridge tart. Some of the recipes are my ouma’s, some are mine and some are in my head.
“I don’t know if the trust will fund my studies, but I know in two years’ time I will no longer get funds.
“But it won’t stop me. I will achieve my dream of having an international bakery.”
Whatever the future holds for Luke, we know his story will go on to inspire others. If he was able to be smart about his money through his most stressful schooling career, he can do anything! We love when updates like this come in.
Luke, we wish you the very best for your future!