From till packer to buyer thanks to bursary programme
For Ray Afrika, the life-changing career journey from till packer to buyer for Africa’s largest food retailer would not have been possible without the aid of a bursary to further his education after school.
“I could never have foreseen this when I was in high school. The moment I got the chance to study, I saw all the doors opening.”
- Ray Afrika
Growing up in Macassar (in Cape Town), Afrika’s career began in 2003 at the age of 16, when he took a weekend job as a till packer at Checkers Somerset West. Here he gained valuable knowledge and experience about the retail industry.
After hearing about and successfully applying to the Shoprite Group’s bursary programme, Afrika was able to study towards a BTech in Retail Business Management at the Cape Peninsula University of Technology (CPUT).
As each bursary is linked to a work-back agreement, Afrika joined the Group as a junior buyer after completing his studies, thereby successfully kickstarting his career.
Afrika has since been promoted to the position of general merchandise buyer, part of a team responsible for the purchasing of non-grocery products for the Group.
“Shoprite changed my personal and professional life. I come from a background where times were tough, but I’ve had an opportunity to improve my circumstances. I cannot recommend the Shoprite bursary programme highly enough.”
- Ray Afrika
With 58% of unemployed South Africans aged 15 - 34 and a shortage of funding for many students in need, the Shoprite Group is searching for bright, hard-working young people like Ray Afrika who need financial support in order to continue their post-school education.