Dr Danie Cronjé, chairman of the Dagbreek Trust, gold Pendoring sponsor.
"The Trust associates itself fully with the 2009 Pendoring campaign's topical and to-the-point pay-off line: ‘Don't neglect the language', followed by the clarion call to action: ‘Create in Afrikaans' to promote and acknowledge excellent Afrikaans advertising. So it's important for us to support this worthy advertising project with a considerable sponsorship as a gold sponsor this year.”
So says Dr Danie Cronjé, chairman of the Dagbreek Trust and former chairman of Absa Group, who personally shares in the passion for Afrikaans media, its promotion and survival.
“Pendoring's merit not only lies in its objective to sustain Afrikaans advertising, but also in its ongoing effort to promote its creation. If we do not create to keep the language alive and forge ahead, it most certainly is in danger of fading away and eventually dying,” stresses Cronjé.
“When you analyse a particular market segment, it stands to reason that you examine the needs and disposable income of all the consumers in this segment, and it's crucial to satisfy their needs to be serviced in their language of choice, which they understand best,” he adds.
“As it's a basic, most important business element, it's quite inconceivable that it's so easily ignored. At the same time, one language should never be exclusive at the expense of another,” cautions Cronjé.
Generally Afrikaans consumers - presumably because Afrikaans is considered a minority language - have become quite lackadaisical about the commercial use of Afrikaans. “We talk about mother tongue education, which is of the utmost importance to us, but when it comes to commerce, we are far less concerned. In reality it's a prerequisite. And if you do not stand up for your language, who will do so on your behalf?”
In contrast to a normal, profit-driven company, the Dagbreek Trust has a specific mission, namely to promote the Afrikaans language in the widest sense of the word, and to support the Afrikaans media.
With this in mind, the Dagbreek Trust, which was founded in the Thirties, has a number of most successful projects, among others the introduction of a translation service at Northwest University (Potchefstroom campus), which not only enables the engineering department to offer courses in Afrikaans to maintain it as the original language of instruction, but also through translation.
“In this regard the trust, interestingly enough, also benefits speakers of other languages. The project has developed to such an extent and is so successful that it has been implemented by other departments at the university.”
In addition, the Dagbreek Trust also supports many other organisations that are directly involved with Afrikaans, for example the Akademie vir Wetenskap en Kuns and the ATKV.
“It has always been our policy to have no infrastructure ourselves, but to use partnerships in support of organisations that have specific projects to promote Afrikaans,” explains Cronjé.
According to Pieter Bruwer, chairman of the 2009 Pendoring working committee, the support of a proven and worthy organisation such as the Dagbreek Trust is invaluable for Pendoring.
“The Dagbreek Trust does an enormous amount of work without any fanfare to promote Afrikaans - truly leading by example and an indispensable champion for the Afrikaans language, which with its significant Pendoring sponsorship, now also helps in no small measure to boost the Afrikaans advertising industry.”