Here Were the #MandelaDay Promises We Made Last Year

Mandela Day is a global call to action that celebrates the idea that each individual has the power to transform the world, the ability to make an impact as well as change one or many people’s lives. In 2014, the Good Work Foundation team each made a pledge, each committing to to make that change and impact. This week, I’m following up on a handful of those pledges.

Kate Groch: “I commit to creating spaces of wonder and learning.”

Hazyview Digital Learning Campus (HDLC) runs an Open Learning Academy for grade 4 scholars from rural, low-income primary schools. Each school plugs into the campus for two hours per week of digital learning on tablets and computers and it has always been Kate’s vision to create a space that is first and foremost about wonder and fun. Over the last year, the number of schoolchildren “plugged in” to GWF’s Open Learning Academies has increased from 400 to 1500. As well as focusing on English and math’s literacy, the campus has created opportunities such as horse-riding, drone-flying and trips into the Kruger.

Mercyful Mathebula: “I will use my hands to make South Africa a better country.”

In her new role as coordinator of the Absa “Bridging Year” for young adult students, Mercyful has spent the last six months building relationships with government departments, bringing career workshops to our students, and creating a resource library that supports our students journey into jobs and/or further studies. Over 300 young adults are enrolled in programmes through our campuses every year, and Mercyful is delivering monthly workshops and connections that are helping these young students connect to their future.

Crispen Bvumbghe: “I will continue to give selfless service to others.”

Crispen is a passionate teacher who dedicates all his hours ensuring that every person that walks into the Hazyview Digital Learning Campus with the intention to learn does just that. Over the last year he has extended the facilities of the campus to four more schools and a new group of orphans and vulnerable children. Crispen has also set up digital Skype connections between our campus and schools in North America, leading to the advent of our virtual schools programme.

Emelda Mlambo: “I will try and condone peace and passion in everything that I do.”

Emelda is an International Computer Driving License (ICDL) facilitator at Hazyview Digital Learning Campus, a quiet lady, who prays every morning for her students and colleagues to be at peace as they walk onto the campus. As well as volunteering to lead the GWF choir, Emelda leads our team in song every morning, energising us all for the day ahead.

Ryan James: “Find the goodness in others.”

After seeing the incredible creative potential of so many of the team and students at GWF, as well as the interest in photography and blogging in particular, Ryan created a series of workshops that eventually grew into being the GWF Media Academy. The members of the Academy now regularly contribute to the GWF website and blog, as well as to local news media. In addition each Academy member now has their very own blog.

Paris Moeng: “Love, respect and care for others.”

Paris was the second person to be awarded the Leanna Knopik Cup, not only for being one of GWF’s hardest working students, but also for being the sole care-giver of his grandmother. He has definitely lived up to his pledge as his presence is always felt the HDLC.

GWF CEO Kate Groch who is very proud of the overall achievements in the Open Learning Academy.

GWF CEO Kate Groch, determined to create a “wonder-filled” space.

Ryan James pledges "to find the goodness in others"

Ryan James pledges “to find the goodness in others”

Crispen Bvumbghe as he was making his pledge to ensure that learning never stops at the HDLC.

Crispen Bvumbghe as he was making his pledge to ensure that learning never stops among GWF staff and students.

Emelda Mlambo who starts off the day with vibrant singing and dance every morning at the HDLC.

Emelda Mlambo who starts off the day with vibrant singing and dance at the HDLC.

Emelda Mlambo, Ryan James, Mercyful Mathebula and Paris Moeng stand proud with the “pink” proof after their pledge.

Written by Accolade Ubisi, Media Blogger at the GWF Media Academy.