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Food gardens at schools impact learners and the community gardens at schools impact learners and the community<p>Thanks to the Jala Peo Food and Nutrition Garden project, every participating primary school on the dry West Coast now boasts a well-maintained vegetable garden that promotes learners' agricultural learning and produces food for nutrition programmes at schools and communities.  <br></p><p><br></p><p>This feat for the initial 19 primary schools is a culmination of four years of hard work and collaboration between various stakeholders, including Stellenbosch University (SU), says Ms Sunet Anderson, project coordinator of the Jala Peo School Food and Nutrition Garden at Jet Education Services, a Johannesburg organisation focussing on improving education for the disadvantaged South African population. </p><p> </p><p>The collaboration between most of the stakeholders, including the University, is continuing this year. They share the vision of introducing vegetable gardens to disadvantaged schools to eradicate hunger and advance education. “Stakeholders are keen to help when it comes to eradicating hunger, especially under children, and promote education. Their contributions help to turn these goals into a reality," says Anderson.</p><p><br></p><p>In signing a memorandum of agreement with Jet at the end of last year, SU fulfils a significant role in creating a cost account and managing the project's funds. “The project is therefore self-sustainable and now managed locally instead of running on funding and management from a central agent," Anderson explains.</p><p><br></p><p>In continuing its collaboration this year, SU offers training in water-wise gardening and facilitates liaison with Power Ponics, a non-profit company responsible for installing aquaponics at some of the schools. The University also supplies curriculum-aligned teacher training material.</p><p><br></p><p><strong>Food gardens in harsh and arid conditions</strong></p><p>Partnering primary schools lie in the harsh, arid and underserved areas near Vredendal, Bitterfontein, Klawer, Doringbaai and Vanrijnsdorp – all in the Matzikama municipality district.<br></p><p><br></p><p> In 2018, 19 schools joined the project's pilot phase due to a dire need for infrastructure and educational development. Last year, six more schools were added.</p><p><br></p><p> In participating in the project, the schools had to overcome a variety of challenges that worked against their gardening plans. In finding solutions, they managed to mitigate the environmental and weather difficulties.<br></p><strong><img src="/english/PublishingImages/Lists/dualnews/My%20Items%20View/272971172_748111949911713_3876136194055136288_n.jpg" alt="272971172_748111949911713_3876136194055136288_n.jpg" class="ms-rtePosition-2" style="margin:5px;width:500px;height:281px;" /><span></span></strong><p><br><br></p><p>Finally, all the schools reached their goals of establishing well-maintained and producing gardens, which form part of the schools' daily management. “On top of that, they also integrated the garden project into learners' school curriculum, supplied fresh produce to school nutrition programmes and promoted the environment's greening," says Anderson.</p><p><br></p><p>In reflecting on this social impact initiative, Anderson emphasises that all the stakeholders learned valuable lessons and best practices regarding sustainable gardening in harsh environments. Most lessons involve mitigating water scarcity, harsh weather conditions, poor soil quality, low human capacity, gravel roads and vast distances. </p><p><br></p><p>“With the funding from a wide base of stakeholders, schools received infrastructure to better cope with harsh climate conditions on the West Coast, including shade net structures and rainwater tanks.</p><p><br></p><p>“The Department of Agriculture has played a significant role in building human capacity and skills through training gardeners, teachers and community members in soil preparation and vegetable production.</p><p><br></p><p>“The Department of Health contributed by presenting workshops on nutrition to learners, community members and food handlers in the National School Nutrition Programme, using the vegetables from school food gardens to prepare meals for learners," says Anderson.</p><p><br></p><p> In general, this project focuses on maintaining and further developing the school gardens on the West Coast, possibly expanding the project to other schools in the Western Cape, and exploring more funding opportunities and research possibilities, says Anderson. Recently Syngenta came on board as a major funder going forward.</p><p><br></p><p>SU is committed to staying involved in a project that has a broad societal impact. “I am very passionate about this project that has a huge impact on the community," says Mr Henk Stander from SU's Faculty of AgriSciences. Stander presented an aquaponics training workshop to some of the teachers at the schools. </p><p><br></p><p><strong>Impact on schools and the community</strong></p><p><strong><br></strong></p><p>One of the participating schools is Steilhoogte Primary near Vredendal. The school's fully functional vegetable garden produces vegetables for the school and the community. The garden project at the school has been so successful that they could expand to develop a nursery that produces seedlings for other school gardens.</p><p><br></p><p>Mr Manus Spamer, principal at Steilhoogte Primary, praises the project and its many opportunities. “It is fantastic to be enabled by all the knowledge sharing, training, funding and assistance to cultivate vegetables," says Spamer.<br></p><p><br></p><p>Spamer states that besides the learners' grasp of vegetable gardening, the garden also produces much-needed food. “We supply fresh produce to the school kitchen and use the garden waste to feed our pig farms or to create compost," says Spamer.<img src="/english/PublishingImages/Lists/dualnews/My%20Items%20View/Jala%20Peo%20Steilhoogte.jpg" alt="Jala Peo Steilhoogte.jpg" class="ms-rtePosition-1" style="margin:5px;width:600px;height:282px;" /><br></p><p><br></p><p>Steilhoogte Primary now operates as a community centre which promotes agricultural practices in the community, where gardening at residences is also encouraged. </p><p><br></p><p>This year, the school has started investigating possibilities to expand the agricultural activities to include packaging, cooling and transporting the fresh produce, says Spamer.</p><p><br></p><p><em>The other primary schools involved in the project are Vredendal North, Vredendal Secondary,</em><em>  </em><em>Vergenoeg, Naastdrift, Spruitdrift, Booysendal, Steilhoogte, Kleinrivier, Nieuwoudt, Trawal, Maskam, Uitkyk,</em><em>  </em><em>Koekenaap, Lutzville,</em><em>  </em><em>Ebenhaeser,</em><em>  </em><em>Doringbaai, Bitterfontein, Rietpoort and St Boniface.In 2021 the project scaled to include six more schools, namely Sederberg , Elizabethfontein, Graafwater Primary and Special School, Nuwerus and Nuwefontein. These schools are also making good progress in establishing and continuously improving gardens.</em></p><p><br></p>2022-08-04T22:00:00Z 2022-08-04T22:00:00.0000000ZCorporate Communication and Marketing/Korporatiewe Kommunikasie en Bemarking - Sandra Mulder
Mandela Day Lecture - Centering Agency: Womxn Transcending Victimhood Day Lecture - Centering Agency: Womxn Transcending Victimhood<p>​The Transformation Office, in partnership with the Student Representative Council and Matie Community Service (MGD), housed under the Division for Social Impact hosted the Mandela Day lecture under the theme “<strong><em>Centering Agency: Womxn Transcending Victimhood</em></strong>"</p><p>The global theme for Mandela Day this year is “<strong><em>Do what you can, with what you have, wherever you are.</em></strong>", in her welcome address Transformation Office Programme Co-ordinator, Shanté Neff shared that, under the theme, it is imperative to shed light on often the most marginalised people in society – women. “We are more than just victims, victims of crime, of gender-based violence, of inequality, of gender roles and stereotypes. This is important [because] we need to stay clear of a narrative that focuses on women's identities as victims in order to create the space for them to be viewed as anything else," shared Neff. </p><p>Transformation Communication Officer, Awethu Fatyela, took a cultural approach in introducing the keynote speaker, this achieved through <em>ukumthutha</em><em> </em>(clan name praises) acknowledging his ancestry and lineage prior to the listing of his qualifications. “In [the] African culture, when one is introduced, we acknowledge their lineage first – owing to our understanding that we are because of those who came before us," noted Fatyela. </p><p>Keynote speaker, Mr Landa Mabenge, UCT PhD candidate, educationalist and Author of Becoming Him – <em>A Trans Memoir of Triumph,</em>– opened his address by noting that under this year's Mandela Day theme; he encourages that all may seek to reimagine the narrative of victimhood that embroils many women across the globe and alchemise it to one of autonomous fortitude. </p><p>Mabenge shared that upon birth we are married into rigid practices, norms and beliefs that are rooted in the immediate removal of personal agency. That through such grows forced assimilation to a narrative that prescribes the evolution of life – well ahead of time. He proceeded to share the key terms under the definition of personal agency, <em>independence</em>, <em>capability, power, resources and potential</em>. </p><p>In a powerful analysis of the journeys of five women, namely Queen Nandi (mother of Shaka Zulu ka Senzangakhona), Tarana Burke, Bobbi Gibb, Major Griffin-Gracey and Caster Semenya, Mabenge highlights the challenges faced by these women and how they continued against the grain of violence and victimhood as they recentred agency in their lives, communities and broader societies. </p><p>“These women's commonalities – the adoption of their wet path of alchemy and the reclaiming of an agency of change in a time when it was not popular to do so – [with] no shared practices amongst them; just a thread of humanity, mandating a complete liberty from different systems of domination in a quest to transmute victimhood to fortitude," said Mabenge </p><p>In closing, he noted that as custodians of our future we have been bestowed an opportunity to know and do better regardless of our respective pasts, our social constructs and where we come from. </p><p>“We all have an obligation to reconfigure the narrative and apply the principles of wet alchemy in allowing all women regardless of race, gender, identity and sexuality to assert themselves on an equal footing as autonomous beings who were born with that right," said Mabenge ​</p><p><br></p>2022-07-26T22:00:00Z 2022-07-26T22:00:00.0000000ZAwethu Fatyela
Velddrif youth means business thanks to SU collaboration youth means business thanks to SU collaboration<p>​​A number of young people from the West Coast community of Noordhoek in Velddrif have started or expanded their own businesses after recently completing an entrepreneurial social impact programme driven by Stellenbosch University (SU), Bergrivier Municipality, the Velddrif Chamber of Commerce and West Coast College.</p><p>The Velddrif Entrepreneurship Programme aims to counter the “sense of hopelessness and worthlessness" induced by poverty, says programme head Dr Clive Coetzee, a senior lecturer in SU's Faculty of Military Science at the University's Saldanha campus. Participants are supported with the entrepreneurial skills they need not only to improve their own and their families' livelihoods but ultimately to address the community's economic and social needs. <br></p><p><strong>The power of collaboration</strong></p><p>The project is yet more proof of what can be achieved through purposeful partnerships. SU, the local authority, the business sector and other education stakeholders – all equally concerned about the youth in Noordhoek – pulled together to host the programme pilot, which took the form of a workshop series over 12 weeks from March to May. All stakeholders made available mentors to present on different business-related topics, while the municipality also supplied a suitable venue. <br></p><p>Not stopping at mentorship and advice, the programme also offered each participant financial support from SU's Social Impact Funding Committee to develop and grow their businesses. The youth even received business equipment worth R10 000 from the Small Enterprise Development Agency (SEDA), as well as a three-year scholarship to study Business Management at West Coast College as an extension of the programme. <br></p><p>“The youth in Noordhoek bear the brunt of unemployment, a lack of perceived business opportunities, and the resulting social ills, such as social discrimination and exclusion, alcohol and drug abuse, crime and violence," Clive explains. This undesirable situation was the main catalyst for the initiative. “Driving through Noordhoek, I could see the lack of opportunities and the joblessness. <br></p><p>“We hope to transform this area into a prosperous and thriving place. The collaboration between all the stakeholders involved in the Velddrif Entrepreneurship Programme is crucial for reaching this goal, and for turning it into a sustainable, community-owned project that enhances entrepreneurship, job creation and wealth generation in Noordhoek," Clive adds.<br></p><p><strong>Fired up about the future</strong></p><p>Prior to the initiative, participant Sederick Nero already had a landscaping and gardening business. “My participation in the programme has improved my business skills and enabled me to learn from other young entrepreneurs' experiences," he says. “I now have better knowledge of how to work with my employees and clients, and manage my finances and marketing." Sederick has since redesigned his business to include home agriculture services as well, which has seen an increase in sales and improved his cash flow.<br></p><p>One participant has started a nail salon, while another has expanded her hair salon by managing her time and clients more professionally. A young furniture maker has introduced new ways to decrease some of his production costs, and his peer plans to open a butchery.<br></p><p>In addition, participants' attitudes and mindsets have changed for the better over the past four months, says Clive. “The youth are more excited about the future, and eager to address unemployment in their community. They now mean business."<br></p><p><strong>Having an impact</strong></p><p>“The participants' progress proves that the Velddrif Entrepreneurship Programme can significantly promote economic growth in Noordhoek," says Chevaan Peters, SU's manager of Knowledge Information Systems and Marketing in the Division of Social Impact. “It has been wonderful to observe the impact of the programme, and to see the participants' determination and commitment to adopt and apply business principles, concepts and practices that lead to opportunities and possibilities. I sincerely hope initiatives of this kind continue to expand." <br></p><p>Thanks to the success of the pilot, the Velddrif programme is set to continue. Recruitment of participants for the second instalment in August has already started in the broader Bergrivier municipal district. Clive encourages more stakeholders to get involved and help address unemployment and social decay on the West Coast. For more information, click <a href="/si/en-za/Pages/initiative.aspx?iid=1389"><span class="ms-rteThemeForeColor-5-3"><strong>here</strong></span></a>.<br></p><p>* <em>The mentors who presented at the workshops are as follows (with presentation topics indicated in brackets): </em></p><p><em> </em></p><ul><li><em>Dr Yolandi Fontaine (The psychology of an entrepreneur) </em></li><li><em>Ms Sarifa Matthee and Mrs Brigitte Barends (Effective communication) </em></li><li><em>Dr Clive Coetzee (Business plan development, SWOT analysis, Unique business points and competitor analysis, Business opportunity identification and market survey, Dragons Den) </em></li><li><em>Mr Dandré van der Merwe (Business types and structure) </em></li><li><em>Mr Basil Nefdt (SEDA business support) </em></li><li><em>Dr Bernard van Nieuwenhuyzen (Budgeting and cash flow) </em></li><li><em>Mrs Otsile Morake (Basic business accounting) </em></li><li><em>Ms Audrey Lawrence (Selling is king) </em></li><li><em>Mr Johnny da Silva (Social media marketing) </em></li><li><em>Ms Sune Stassen (Business creativity) </em></li></ul><p> </p><p> </p><p>​​<br></p>2022-07-17T22:00:00Z 2022-07-17T22:00:00.0000000ZCorporative Communication and Marketing/Korporatiewe Kommunikasie en Bemarking - Sandra Mulder
Nelson Mandela Day 2022 - “Do what you can, with what you have, wherever you are” Mandela Day 2022 - “Do what you can, with what you have, wherever you are”<p>​This year, Stellenbosch University's Student Representative Council collaborates with Matie Community Service (MGD) housed within the Division for Social Impact, the Transformation Office, Human Resources Wellness<strong> </strong>and the Language Centre, to commemorate Mandela Day. </p><p>In November 2009, the United Nations (UN) officially declared Nelson Mandela International Day “Mandela Day", an annual celebration of Mandela's legacy on 18 July. It serves as a global call for individuals to give of their time to a charity or good cause to improve or have a meaningful impact on society.<br></p><p>This year's SU's Mandela Day is located within the global theme “<strong>Do what you can, with what you have, wherever you are", </strong>the focus will be to honour Stellenbosch university students. We would like to acknowledge their significant role in highlighting critical concerns around inequality, gender-based violence, racism, decolonized education, financial exclusion, the #FallistMovements and other painful experiences of students within the higher education sector.</p><p></p><p>Historically, student activism has been a crucial force for social change during times of crisis. In recent decades, students around the world have led movements to promote democracy and human rights. Students have often served as nations' conscience, bringing to light the founding ideals of their countries and the aspirations of all people for justice, dignity, and equality during turbulent times.</p><p>Students are the heart of this institution. They have tirelessly and boldly stood at the forefront advocating for radical institutional transformation to a enable a space of belonging for all say Hector-Kannemeyer Head Matie Community Service and Deputy-Director: Division for Social Impact. Matie Community Service supports the call of the SRC to honour student activism within Stellenbosch University as part of our Mandela Day celebrations for 2022 and our institutional commitment to a transformative student experience. </p><p>While the official Mandela Day takes place on 18 July, this year, SU's activities on the Stellenbosch campus will take place from the first week of the new semester when students are back on campus. This year, Nelson Mandela International Day happens to coincide with the return of all students and staff back 'home' for the first time in almost two and a half years. Although this call needs to go beyond what is planned for Mandela day, we invite the SU students, staff and community to reflect, participate and partner with us for this upcoming Mandela month celebrations.</p><p>The Student Representative Council, supported by Matie Community Service (MGD), Transformation Office, Human Resources Wellness<strong> </strong>and the Language Centre, invite you to join the planned Mandela Day events fully cognisant of the ongoing challenging environment students have to navigate in order to continue their learning journeys. </p><p><strong>On the 19</strong><strong><sup>th</sup></strong><strong> of July at the Neelsie, Level 3: VV Hall:</strong></p><p>From 09:00 – 16:00 Human Resources Wellness<strong> </strong>is providing a Discovery Wellness Experience for staff and students. The Discovery Wellness Experience is an interactive screening where key body metrics and blood tests are performed. Wellness screenings are important because you will find out about your current health and lifestyle risks and receive advise on what to do about identified risks. A full screening takes between <strong>35 to 40 minutes</strong> to complete. You will receive a comprehensive report on your health and wellness after the screening.</p><p><strong>A professional Wellness Specialist will perform the following screening assessments at the Discovery Wellness Experience:</strong> </p><ul style="list-style-type:disc;"><li>Glucose, cholesterol and blood pressure tests</li><li>A postural assessment</li><li>An eye assessment</li><li>Weight, height and body mass index (BMI) measurements</li><li>An HIV test.</li></ul><p>If you choose to have an HIV test done, the Wellness Specialist will provide counselling before and after you take the test. Your HIV test results are kept completely confidential.<br></p><p><strong>Vitality members</strong> </p><p>Vitality members can earn thousands of points after a Discovery Wellness Experience, depending on how many results are in a healthy range. At each status level, members over 18 can enjoy a variety of rewards including half-price movies, flight savings, cash back on groceries, fuel savings, weekly rewards and more. </p><p><strong>All you need to know</strong> </p><ul style="list-style-type:disc;"><li>Bring your medical aid membership card and ID or driver's license </li><li>Dress comfortably - you need to be barefoot for some checks (no socks or stockings) </li><li>Complete the pre-assessment questionnaire before your Discovery Wellness Experience. You will receive a link to the questionnaire with your booking confirmation. </li></ul><p><a href=""><strong>Click here</strong></a><strong> to book your spot.</strong></p><p>From 12:30 – 14:30, we wish to provide an experience that promotes student well-being, including the distribution of the Mandela Booster Box Challenge that aims to exceed the provision of 200 comfort boxes for returning students most in need of care. Will you take up the challenge? Contact Cheryl Cornelissen at <a href=""></a> and make a pledge. </p><p>The Student Representative Council at Tygerberg campus is also joining the Mandela Booster Boxes pledge and Isabella Turner can be contacted to get involved. Contact Isabella at <a href=""></a> If you wish to get involved and make your pledge.</p><p>An initiative driven by the Student Representative Council of Tygerberg, “Together we CAN alleviate food insecurity on Tygerberg Campus" is inviting the contribution of canned food products at collection points in the Admin building and in the TSS. Many students are silently battling food insecurity and the aim is to assist students with products that will strengthen their food security and allow them to focus on other spheres of their life, such as the enjoyment of being a student. </p><p>In the spirit of Nelson Mandela Day, the Tygerberg Student Representative Council, will be doing 67 minutes of a can-for-cupcake or can-for-MyBrew-coffee exchange. A limited number of cupcakes will be available in the Admin building and a limited number of coffees will be available in TSS between 12:30 – 13:37, together we CAN!</p><p>Additionally, only at the Stellenbosch campus, staff and students on a first come first serve basis can receive neck, shoulder, head, and feet massages (15min) and a cappuccino and cinnamon pancake (limited amount of vouchers available).<br></p><p><em>“What counts in life is not the mere fact that we have lived. It is what difference we have made to the lives of others that will determine the significance of the life we lead." – </em><em><strong>Nelson Mandela</strong></em><em> </em></p><p><strong>On the 22</strong><strong><sup>nd</sup></strong><strong> of July at the Attie van Wijk Auditorium (Faculty of Theology):</strong></p><p>From 12:30 – 14:30 the Faculty of Theology has made available the Attie van Wijk Auditorium for the hosting of the Mandela Day lecture titled: <strong><em>Centring Agency: Womxn transcending victimhood</em></strong> hosted by the Transformation Office, the Student Representative Council, Matie Community Service (MGD) housed within the Division for Social Impact will be delivered by Author of <em>“Becoming Him – A Trans Memoir of Triumph" </em>LandaMabenge. A unique tale of torture and triumph bravely exposes cultural shame and abuse against those who choose the path less travelled.  </p><p><em>​“We don't have to be victims of our past, that we can let go of our bitterness, and that all of us can achieve greatness." – </em><em><strong>Nelson Mandela</strong></em></p><p>RSVP<strong> </strong>by 19 July 2022 to avoid disappointment (limited space available): <a href=""></a>. Inquiries: Ms. Shanté Neff – <a href=""></a><br></p><p></p><p><strong>On the 26</strong><strong><sup>th</sup></strong><strong> of July at the CoCreate Hub:</strong></p><p>Nelson Mandela is remembered by the world for his life, his leadership, and his commitment to human rights and humanitarian causes. In conclusion, commemorating the spirit of Madiba and his vision to spread social justice and freedom for all, a Celebration of Excellence from 17:00pm – 19:00pm will be held at CoCreate Hub, 7 Victoria St, Stellenbosch, on 26 July 2022.​ </p><p>The purpose of this event is to celebrate excellence in business, social entrepreneurship, art, design, poetry, culinary skills, music from local and student entrepreneurs and artists.  </p><p>“There is no passion to be found playing small – in settling for a life that is less than the one you are capable of living."<em> – </em><em><strong>Nelson Mandela ​</strong></em></p><p>To encounter this limited experience, RSVP by 22 July 2022: ​ <a href=""></a>. Inquiries: Ms. Tamlyn February – <a href=""></a>  ​ </p><p>* Staff can send details of planned activities to <a href=""></a> by Friday, 15 July 2022. The information will be used to compile a list of all SU Mandela Day activities for July 2022.<br></p>2022-07-12T22:00:00Z 2022-07-12T22:00:00.0000000ZChevaan Peters
SU Museum wins award for promoting multilingualism Museum wins award for promoting multilingualism<p>Stellenbosch University Museum has been awarded the 2022 National PanSALB (Pan South African Language Board) Multilingualism Award for using and promoting multilingualism at a higher education institute.<br></p><p>The SU Museum accepted this prestigious award at a PanSALB ceremony in Johannesburg on 15 June. SU and two other universities, the University of Venda and Unisa's Recognition of Prior Learning (RPL) division, were the nominees for this award in the education category.<br></p><p>This award, among others, recognises the SU Museum's commitment to marketing its programmes as wide as possible to cater for its diverse audiences and make the Museum inclusive. The Museum presents all its marketing communication in English, Afrikaans and isiXhosa.<br></p><p>The PanSALB award will now hang next to the Museum's other two awards received in 2018 – the Cultural Affairs Award for “Best Museum Promoting Social Inclusion" and the Sustainable Development Award from the Cape Winelands District Municipality.<br></p><p>Thrilled and excited about this award for promoting multilingualism, Bongani Mgijima, Director of the SU Museum, revealed that the Museum had decided years ago to have programmes in line with the University's Vision 2040 and be more socially inclusive while promoting community involvement.<br></p><p>“To achieve this and broaden the Museum's social impact in the community, we decided to circulate all the museum's marketing collateral in English, Afrikaans and IsiXhosa since these are the main languages spoken in the Western Cape," said Mgijima.<br></p><p>With the Museum's enhancement of multilingualism and social inclusion, the Museum was a strong candidate for this PanSALB award to individuals, institutes or organisations that excelled in the “promotion, protection and preservation of all official languages including Khoi, Nama and San languages as well South African Sign Language". <br></p><p>Besides the Education category, the other award categories were Language and Literature, Language Activist Award, Media, Youth, Government or Public Sector, Technology and Business, Music, Translation and Interpretation and the Chairperson's lifetime achievement awards.<br></p><p>Except for SU Museum's multilingual marketing material, it also has other programmes promoting diverse cultures and languages like the African Drumming Tuesdays, which enables tourists and locals to learn the skills of playing the African drum.<br></p><p>Additionally, the Museum has active public educational programmes to attract diverse audiences. The Access to Visual Arts programme is the Museum's flagship social impact programme aimed at school learners, paying for students from disadvantaged schools to be able to broaden learners' access to the University Museum and introduce learners to art. <br></p><p>The Wednesday Art Walkabout is an initiative of the University Museum to educate and share its art collections with the public, while the Just Conversations series focuses on key issues such as intergenerational struggles, identity, silences in African history, the role of archives and museums as it relates to social justice to name but a few of the issues that activists, academics, and practitioners will discuss.<br></p><p>Last but not least, the Ubuntu Dialogues Project, a collaboration that centres around transnational dialogue and engagement among students, faculty and community partners in South Africa and the United States. <br></p><p>According to Mgijima, the circulation of marketing collateral by the Museum in the three national languages is testimony to the Museum's commitment to market its programmes as wide as possible to cater for its diverse audience and make the Museum more inclusive to all.<br></p><p>For more information on the University Museum's programmes, visit: <a href=""></a></p><p>Main picture: Museum staff with the PanSALB award.<br></p><p>Photo: Sandra Mulder<br></p><p><br><br></p>2022-06-20T22:00:00Z 2022-06-20T22:00:00.0000000ZCorporate Communication and Marketing/Korporatiewe Kommunikasie en Bemarking - Sandra Mulder
SU offers number whizz a life-changing opportunity offers number whizz a life-changing opportunity<p>​​​Although 17-year-old Kimberley Lucas from Wentworth, KwaZulu-Natal, achieved four distinctions in Grade 12 last year, including 99% for maths, she had not applied to any university. That, she believed, was meant for rich people only. Coming from a socially and economically disadvantaged background, she – like many of her peers from Wentworth – had accepted that she had to find a casual job somewhere or sit at home. “All that we could do was to finish school and find a job," Kimberley says.<br></p><p><strong>Life changed within minutes</strong></p><p>Fortunately, this came to the attention of caring maths teacher Beverley Hargreaves from Umbilo Secondary. Exploring every possible avenue to get Kim to university, Hargreaves and friend Marlon Burgess ended up with Prof Singh from a tertiary institution in KwaZulu-Natal. Prof Singh referred them to Prof Jonathan Jansen, distinguished professor in the Faculty of Education at Stellenbosch University (SU). “When I heard this young top achiever was from Wentworth, I immediately understood why she had not applied to university. Underserved communities have complex sociologies that must be taken into account," Prof Jansen says.</p><p>Realising that Kim undoubtedly qualified for tertiary studies, Prof Jansen made an enquiry at SU's financial support services. Within minutes, Kim was offered a full scholarship in Actuarial Science, with her accommodation and meals all paid. “Kim is, without question, a genius," says Prof Jansen. “That is why I am delighted that SU has changed her life with this opportunity."</p><p><strong>Determined to succeed</strong></p><p>Into her second week on the Stellenbosch campus, Kimberley is still a tad overwhelmed by the drastic change in her life but is slowly but surely adapting to her new life as a Matie student. “I like it here, and everyone is friendly. Everyone in Wentworth is proud of me," says the newcomer, adding that she is the first person in her family to study at a university. </p><p>She always steered clear of the social ills of drugs, gangs and violence in her area, she says, and, instead, focused on her schoolwork and studied hard to get top marks. “So, when I did not get funding from the National Student Financial Aid Scheme, I was sad at first because I wanted to go to university. But then I accepted it, forgot about applying anywhere, and thought of finding a job. Any job would have been fine for me," says soft-spoken Kim. </p><p>She is extremely grateful to Prof Jansen and SU for giving her this opportunity, as well as to SU graduate Emily O'Ryan, who showed her around campus and helped her settle in at Nemesia residence upon her arrival in Stellenbosch.</p><p>Now that classes are in full swing, this number whizz says she finds her lectures interesting. She is motivated to work hard and complete her studies, and then practise as an actuary. “I will be a professional actuary one day, earn a good salary and buy a house," Kim says. “I don't know where I will stay ... maybe I will grow attached to the Cape. And I will help the other Wentworth people who want to study, but do not get an opportunity like me."<img src="/english/PublishingImages/Lists/dualnews/My%20Items%20View/rec%20kim.jpg" alt="rec kim.jpg" class="ms-rtePosition-3" style="margin:5px;" /><br></p><ul><li>During her first days on campus, Kim coincidently met Rector and Vice-Chancellor, Prof Wim de Villiers, who informally welcomed her to SU and wished her every success in her studies.</li></ul><p> </p><p><br></p>2022-02-28T22:00:00Z 2022-02-28T22:00:00.0000000ZSandra Mulder
‘Hold on to your conviction in life and never let it go’‘Hold on to your conviction in life and never let it go’<p>​​“Find your conviction in life – the thing you want to be remembered for; hold on to it and never let it go."<br></p><p>Reflecting on her life of never letting go of her conviction to solve the problems caused by climate change in Africa, Ms Vere Shaba – one of the top 100 businesswomen in Africa – shared this piece of advice with Stellenbosch University (SU) newcomer students last week. Shaba delivered a heartening message in her keynote address, “Driving social impact through social entrepreneurship", at SU's annual social impact morning on 10 February 2022. She encouraged newcomer students to the University to find their specific cause in life that will contribute to a better world. </p><p>This social impact morning, themed #ISEE, was hosted by Maties Community Services, the Division for Social Impact and the Centre for Student Communities in the Student Affairs Division to introduce new students from Stellenbosch and Tygerberg to SU's social impact commitment. The hybrid event included a virtual symposium with staff and students, followed by practical face-to-face activities.</p><p>The main focus was to let the newcomers “see" the University's commitment to social impact and that social impact is an institutional strategic priority. Students also “saw" the real-life social challenges linked to the government's Sustainable Development Goals (SDG) and the strength of a network of stakeholders working together to solve social ills, said Ms Renee Hector-Kannemeyer,  Deputy-director: Social Impact and head of Matie Community Services.</p><p>Shaba's 12-year career demonstrates how social impact can occur through social entrepreneurship. With perseverance, passion and commitment to making Africa a better place, she obtained a mechanical engineering qualification and then founded a multinational engineering consulting firm, Greendesign Africa, which brings green buildings, solar energy and green engineering to Africa. </p><p>Shaba's conviction started long before she actually launched her company. Her passion was triggered by the knowledge that Africa is the continent most impacted by high temperatures and climate change and has, on top of that, little green technology development. “And that's the reason why I ended up going into this space: knowing and understanding that simply by working with green buildings and green engineering, I can do my very small part in my lifetime."</p><p>Inspiring the new students to also do their part in life by solving social challenges, Shaba ensured students that “every single one of them can lean into all the existing opportunities to solve some of the greatest challenges that we have". “All it takes is finding your conviction, the problem you want to solve and the social impact you want to create and then decide how you are going to solve it," said Shaba, adding that “all of you have at least one thing that you will be able to solve during your time at Stellenbosch and even afterwards, as you can continue to make a difference on our continent."</p><p>Supporting the idea that every student should apply their talents, skills and knowledge to benefit society, Hector-Kannemeyer explained that the University has a responsibility of “sending engaged students and engaged graduates into the world to solve complex real-life world challenges". </p><p>“Universities have a social responsibility to use their talents to benefit those in society that are not as privileged as we are and to develop well-rounded thought-leaders who have integrated what they have learned and experienced back into society.</p><p>Ending her address, Shaba reiterated: “So my closing question is: 'What is the social impact that you individually want to be remembered for?' Hopefully, this question will encourage you to continue to make a social impact as much as you possibly can. And I did mine through social entrepreneurship. As the years continue to unfold for you, you will see how you can make a social impact that will change the continent as a student from an African university," said Shaba.</p><p>Ms Precious Nhamo, chair of the portfolio for Social Impact and Development on the Students' Representative Council (SRC), also informed newcomers that the SRC has prioritised social impact and encouraged students to become involved. “As we start our journey at SU, let us not only see with our eyes but also see with our hearts and see where there is a need and how we can contribute. It is our duty to give back to our society. Social responsibility should be at the heart of humanity," she said.</p><p>The morning concluded with all the newcomers to the Stellenbosch and Tygerberg campuses participating in various social impact initiatives with the relevant community partner. These initiatives ranged from making eco-bricks, taking care of neglected dogs at an animal shelter and planting <em>spekbome</em> to cleaning the Strand beach and preparing sandwiches for the night shelter and surrounding communities. </p><p> </p><p> Photographers: Stefan Els, Chevaan Peters en Sandra Mulder​<br></p><p>​<br></p>2022-02-13T22:00:00Z 2022-02-13T22:00:00.0000000ZSandra Mulder
A meaningful and memorable welcoming for SU newcomers meaningful and memorable welcoming for SU newcomers <p></p><p>Stellenbosch University (SU) will be welcoming more than 5 000 newcomer students to its campuses this week with the start of its official Welcoming Period, which will run from Monday 31 January until Saturday 12 February 2022.</p><p>In contrast to last year's virtual welcome ceremony due to the pandemic restrictions at the time, newcomer students will this year be officially welcomed in person by Rector and Vice-Chancellor Prof Wim de Villiers as well as SRC chair Ms Viwe Kobokana. This will take place at the Danie Craven stadium on Thursday 3 February. In line with level-1 Covid-19 safety protocols, the traditional mass welcoming ceremony will be replaced with two smaller events, each accommodating a maximum of 2 000 guests. </p><p>At these ceremonies, newcomers will get to know the University management, student leaders, house committee members and fellow first-years. The first event, at 14:45, will be attended by newcomers from the Rubix, Validus and amaMaties student clusters, while the 17:00 event will accommodate students from Wimbledon, VicMeyr, Victoria, Tygerberg and Huis Neethling. Parents will have access to a video recording of the welcoming event, which will be available on SU's website.</p><p>The welcoming event marks the official start of the University's Welcoming Period, comprising a comprehensive and fully integrated <a href="/english/welcome/Pages/Online-Onboarding.aspx">programme of welcoming activities</a> during the first two weeks of February. During this time, newcomers are introduced to all aspects of campus and student life, including academic programmes and the wide range of student support services at their disposal. “The programme features meaningful and memorable events as well as information and orientation sessions to help the new Maties start their educational journey confidently," says Mr Pieter Kloppers, director of the Centre for Student Communities.</p><p>Another two exciting events lined up are the Dream Walk in Victoria Street on the evening of Thursday 3 February (20:00–22:15) and the Vensters street theatre on Saturday 12 February (09:00–22:00).</p><p><strong> </strong></p><p><strong>Iconic Dream Walk into its fourth year</strong></p><p>Following the official welcoming event, students will participate in the Dream Walk in Victoria Street in groups of 100. Launched in 2019, this initiative sees students walk underneath a banner hanging across Victoria Street to symbolise the official start of their academic journey at SU. Students also get the opportunity to attach handwritten cards with their dreams to one of the trees lining Victoria Street. </p><p>“The symbolism of the Dream Walk, being the moment when you begin your academic journey and start realising your dreams, makes it an iconic event for newcomers," says Kloppers. “Whenever they pass that spot again, they will be reminded of their dreams." </p><p><strong>Vensters 2022 a ticketed two-hour concert</strong></p><p>Another highlight will be the Vensters street theatre, which will be hosted indoors at the Coetzenburg centre on 12 February 2022 (09:00–22:00). Newcomers will perform in a colourful two-hour music and dance concert in regular intervals throughout the day. Parents and other guests can attend this ticketed event. All Covid-19 protocols will apply at this event.</p><p>Newcomers will commence with classes on 14 February, which will also mark the official start of the University's 2022 academic year.</p><p> </p><p><em>More information about the University's 2022 Welcoming Period:</em></p><ul><li><em>Students have access to an online </em><a href="/english/welcome/Pages/Online-Onboarding.aspx"><em>onboarding programme</em></a><em> to help prepare them for the practical aspects of their studies. The programme is offered on SUNLearn, the University's learning management system. </em></li><li><em>The University's website, </em><a href="/"><em></em></a><em>, contains all the information newcomer students may need. The full welcoming programme and additional details, including the registration schedule, transport details, personal safety guidelines and information about SU Library, are available </em><a href="/english/welcome/Pages/default.aspx"><em>here</em></a><em>. </em><em> </em></li></ul><ul><li><em>Social media updates about the Welcoming Period will be posted under the hashtag #helloMaties.</em> </li><li><em>Heavy traffic is expected on all main roads to Stellenbosch as well as in town on 2 and 3 February 2022.</em></li></ul><p>​<br></p>2022-01-30T22:00:00Z 2022-01-30T22:00:00.0000000ZCorporate Communications and Marketing/Korporatiewe Kommunikasie en Bemarking
Three students of the WOW school project make history students of the WOW school project make history<p><br><br></p><p>Three first-generation students from the WOW 50 Schools Recruitment project graduated this week at Stellenbosch University (SU)'s December hybrid graduation ceremonies after overcoming many hurdles on their way to realising their dream to obtain a tertiary qualification.<br></p><p>Rudy-Lee Booyse (Bachelor of Education), Shaznay Bernardo (Postgraduate Certificate in Education or PGCE) and Charlton Davids (Bachelor of Theology) made history by being the first person in their families to receive a university qualification.</p><p><a href="/english/Lists/dualnews/DispForm.aspx?ID=7928&Source=http%3A%2F%2Fwww%2Esun%2Eac%2Eza%2Fenglish%2FLists%2Fdualnews%2FMy%2520Items%2520View%2Easpx%23InplviewHashb573dc8f%2D0bcf%2D4c5f%2Da5ff%2Dcb0d4bf3bdb8%3D&ContentTypeId=0x010019F8BC5373DFA740B008FC720EA25DE601001164650C2CAFD842A65CBCFBB7C2C2A4">The WOW school programme</a>, an empowerment initiative of the SU Woordfees, identified and recruited them for university studies while they were still high school learners. This programme recruits prospective students from schools in disadvantaged communities. WOW's staff members then guide and support these deserving learners who wish to study further from school until graduation.</p><p>Sharing their stories of how their dreams became real, all three described their graduation as one of the greatest experiences they have ever had and it makes all their hard work and the hardships they had to endure worthwhile. </p><p><strong>Rudy-Lee Booyse</strong></p><p>“Today I am a proud graduate. The first of five children to graduate. I am especially proud of this achievement because I am from the Cape Flats, where socio-economic conditions make people stagnate. I am very excited for what the future holds and what I can achieve with this degree," says Booyse.</p><p>When he matriculated at Atlantis Secondary School on the Cape Flats, he was part of the WOW school project that helped him to commence with Bachelor of Science studies in 2017. </p><p>Later that year, his world was turned upside down when his father suddenly died. “The circumstances of my father's death were something I could never have imagined and it had a negative impact on my studies."</p><p>During that traumatic time, Booyse reflected on his life, its purpose as well as his late father's wishes that he should become a teacher. “I thought a lot about my father's words, telling me that I was a 'born teacher' and should study education," says Booyse. </p><p>He changed his academic programme in 2018, started his BEd studies and received his qualification at the 2021 December graduation ceremony.  </p><p><strong>Shaznay Bernardo </strong></p><p>Bernardo, who hails from Atlantis, believes that you do not have to be defined by your struggles, but you can gain strength from it. </p><p>Living by this motto, she pursued two qualifications while being pregnant, and had to undergo an emergency caesarean section during her final examinations in 2019. Then she had to juggle the roles of motherhood and being a student at the same time while trying to cope with all the responsibilities.  </p><p>Thanks to hard work and perseverance, she graduated in March this year with a BA degree in International Studies, and this week she received her PGCE with distinction. She is now a qualified teacher. “As a teacher, I can make an impact and change the lives of the youth of South Africa."</p><p>She was also part of the Maties newspaper, the Saxonsea Secondary School's WOW School newspaper project and a member of student societies such as Adam Tas, Maties cheerleading and Maties PAW.  </p><p>Next year she will continue with her postgraduate studies in Educational Development and Democracy while she continues to raise her two-year-old daughter.</p><p><strong>Charlton Davids </strong></p><p>“I'm super excited about receiving my degree in Theology. All the hard work paid off and I am also so proud to be the first person in my family to go to university and obtain a degree," says Davids.</p><p>“What kept me going was the fact that I knew where I wanted to go in life and that I wasn't alone – there are hundreds of other students going through similar difficulties. My friends and family encouraged me the whole time, especially during the most difficult times," says Davids.  </p><p>The most important source of hope and motivation was his trust and belief in God and his promises. “He gave me the strength," says Davids.</p><p>He is one of four children in his family. He matriculated at Luckhoff Senior Secondary school in 2017 and started his academic programme in 2019.</p><p>“I had a few challenges. One of them was reading because I hated to read. The programme expected me to read a lot; I often had to read articles of 10 pages or more. That freaked me out," says Davids.</p><p>He also had to do most of his studying and assignments on campus, because there was always noise at home during the day. “When I was unable to finish all my work on campus, I had to work late at night to finish it and to prepare for the next day's class, test or examination," he says.  </p><p>Just to add to his challenges, his laptop broke during the lockdown and he lost almost all his academic work that he had stored on his computer. “I had to write online exams and read all the academic work all over again," he recalls.</p><p>Next year, he plans to continue with his postgraduate studies.</p><p> </p><p>​<br></p>2021-12-14T22:00:00Z 2021-12-14T22:00:00.0000000ZCorporate Communication and Marketing/Korporatiewe Kommunikasie en Bemarking - Sandra Mulder
Sooliman receives Social Justice Champion award receives Social Justice Champion award<p>​Dr Imtiaz Sooliman, founder of the Gift of the Givers Foundation, has received the Social Justice Champion of the Year 2021 award for the life-saving work carried out by the non-governmental organisation (NGO) during the COVID-19 lockdown. The Gift of the Givers Foundation is the largest disaster response NGO of African origin on the African continent. <br></p><p>The award, which is an initiative of Stellenbosch University's Faculty of Law Trust Chair in Social Justice, was launched in 2020 and recognises individuals who advance equality and reduce poverty, have shown a commitment to justice for all while galvanising others to pull together in a socially cohesive manner.</p><p>Prof Thuli Madonsela, holder of the Chair in Social Justice, conferred the award during a ceremony at the Coopmanhuijs Boutique Hotel in Stellenbosch last week (5 November). Among the guests were Prof Nicola Smit, Dean of the Faculty of Law, Dr Leslie van Rooi, Senior Director: Social Impact and Transformation at SU, and Mr Eon Hendrikse, founder of the Clay Foundation, who shared the award with Kabelo Mahlobogwane in 2020. The Clay Foundation focuses on youth upliftment and leadership development.</p><p>Sooliman has been globally recognised for the life-saving work the organisation does.</p><p>In March 2018, SU bestowed an honorary doctorate upon Sooliman in recognition of the outstanding work he has undertaken through the foundation. Between 2007 and 2019, nine other honorary doctorates were bestowed upon Sooliman for the foundation's rescue missions nationally and globally.</p><p>“I have won many awards over the years, but this award [Social Justice Champion Award] is very special and important to me because of the timing and under the circumstances in which the award was made. I am very grateful.</p><p>“The timing of the award (bringing relief to communities affected by the pandemic) and the wording on the certificate resonate with our work," said Sooliman after receiving the award certificate from Madonsela.</p><p>At the event, Sooliman elaborated on the foundation's relief efforts during the lockdown period, including supplying water, medical equipment and food. The initiatives also included the supply and delivery of 2 500 oxygen machines for COVID-19 patients at more than 200 hospitals in six provinces over ten days during the pandemic outbreak in March last year. </p><p>“People were dying, and we rushed to get the machines to the hospitals. Many people's lives were saved by these machines," said Sooliman.</p><p>The Foundation also refurbished the Freesia Ward at Mitchell's Plain Hospital to serve as a dedicated <a href="">COVID-19</a> facility during peak times and multidisciplinary usage at other times.</p><p>Madonsela said Sooliman was undoubtedly the social justice champion of the year for the sterling and life-saving work his foundation did during the lockdown. </p><p>“The work he does is all about advancing social justice. It is about stepping in as social leaders to create equality. As social leaders, we understand that inequality divides societies and that poverty is not a natural human condition but human-made and can be eradicated. This award also recognises leaders who take action to improve the human condition," said Madonsela.</p><p>Sooliman received a statuette and certificate with the following inscription:</p><p>“A Social Justice Champion is someone who has moved the needle consistently to advance equality and reduce poverty, a person who has shown a commitment to justice as justice for all while galvanising others to pull together in a socially cohesive manner. </p><p>“Social justice entails the just, fair and equitable distribution of all opportunities, resources, benefits, privileges and burdens in society. This finds expression in the equal enjoyment of all rights and freedoms by all. At the core of social justice is embracing the humanity of every person so that nobody should find it harder than others to exist in society, and nobody should bear more burdens than others."<br></p><p>Photographer: Anton Jordaan<br></p><p>​<br></p>2021-11-10T22:00:00Z 2021-11-10T22:00:00.0000000ZCorporate Communication and Marketing/Korporatiewe Kommunikasie en Bemarking - Sandra Mulder