Education is a central focus of the integrated rural development strategy of the Bulungula Incubator. Rehabilitation of No-ofisi Senior Primary School was the project that prompted the formal incorporation of the NGO in 2007. At that time the only educational facility available was a collapsed wattle and daub structure where little teaching of any kind took place.
The original No-ofisi School in 2007
Since then, our Education programme has expanded to include projects that cover educational initiatives from infants to adults. These include:
- The Jujurha Preschool which provides excellent Early Childhood Development to 55 children of Nqileni Village.
- A nutrition programme that supplies hot meals including organic vegetables from 2 permaculture gardens for ~ 300 learners and regular deworming to control intestinal parasites.
- A fully stocked library open to all community members that offers stimulating story-telling sessions and Parent Workshops on a range of themes including infant and toddler education.
- A Rural Schools Outreach programme that continues to work with No-ofisi SPS on infrastructural rehabilitation and teacher support while actively extending assistance and teaching materials to a further 10 schools in the area.
- Teacher training for local community members aspiring to become qualified Early Childhood Development Practitioners. The programme includes intensive formal learning and in-service training by experienced educators.
- An After School Enrichment programme open to all Grade 1-6 learners at No-ofisi SPS, providing stimulating exercises that aim to inculcate a love of learning.
The Jujurha Education Centre opened in July 2009
For the exceptional graduates from the Jujurha Preschool, we have added the Vulindlela Scholarship Fund (meaning: ‘to open the road’) to our Educational programme. The scholarship programme will finance their schooling from Grade 1 through to at least grade 12 at a good quality school in Mthatha. The fund will finance all expenses including school fees, uniforms, travel, accommodation and living expenses.
The cost is R17,000 per child per year and we need your help in the form of a monthly, annual or once-off contribution (every R100 per month counts :), as well as spreading the word to your friends, family and business associates. Download an information sheet on the Vulindlela Scholarship Programme
At the end of 2010 all our Grade R learners were professionally assessed by an independent psychometrist and all were found to be school ready. Five children were found to have exceptional abilities. The fund will offer scholarships to each of these children and we hope to support this number each year into the future.
While working in this area we have found it challenging to mobilise the community to exercise their right to demand quality education for their children. Their expectations of the schools in the area are, understandably, limited to that which they have experienced themselves. Few adults in the area have ever experienced any formal education and those who have, have experienced little different to that of dysfunctional schools like No-ofisi SPS. Through the scholarship fund we hope to raise a group of role models and activists for education – and a growing group of young South Africans who will actively contribute to the future of our country.
How you can help:
The cost of school fees and living expenses for each child to attend a good quality school in Mthatha is R17,000 per child per year.
- Pledge a regular monthly contribution to the scholarship fund (fill in the pledge form on the ‘Donate’ page). Monthly contributions will help us to plan for each child’s monthly needs and invest and grow the fund for future generations.
- Make a once-off contribution via our website using your credit or debit card on the ‘Donate’ page above.
- For international donors, the cost of bank transfers can be prohibitive and we would suggest an annual pledge that can transferred, most cost effectively via our website, using a credit card. Please fill in the form on the ‘Donate’ page so that we can add the amounts to our budgets.
- Select the Bulungula Incubator as your MySchool Woolworths beneficiary (apply for a new card at www.myschool.co.za or add us as a beneficiary to your existing card: https://www.myschool.co.za/supporter/update/load_profile.php) – a percentage of all your Woolworths purchases will go to the fund. Use MySchool Travel to make all your travel arrangements with a percentage of the purchase going to the fund without extra fees or costs to you: www.myschooltravel.co.za See the previous blog post for more info on this.
- Leave a lasting legacy (what can be more lasting than an education?) – leave a bequest in your will to the Scholarship fund. No need to make any changes to your will just complete this form the CODICIL form. Click on: Download Codicil Form
- “Like us” on Facebook and help the campaign to gather momentum http://www.facebook.com/pages/Bulungula/204865952890390.
- Download and send this document to friends, family and colleagues who may be interested and encourage them to make a pledge. You can approach the company you work for to make this a company-wide effort. Download an information sheet on the Vulindlela Scholarship Programme
We will send you:
Profiles, information and regular updates on the progress of the children who become beneficiaries of the fund. You would be able to meet them here at Bulungula, meet their families and introduce them to your children, creating an opportunity for the children of our country to build the bridges we need to strengthen our Nation.