The Day Mr. Trevor Manuel said: “Make it Work”

A few years ago, a digital campus in rural Hazyview made records. It promised to provide rural South African school-leavers with something that they’d never before had: access to affordable education close to home. It was unprecedented. Students from the “villages”, without big bank accounts or formal qualifications, could enrol in information-technology, hospitality and English courses at their local campus.

At a time when tertiary studies in the nearest big town cost upwards of forty thousand rand per year, the Hazyview Digital Learning Campus, in partnership with South African ICT company T-Systems, was delivering incredible value. For less than ten thousand rand, a second-chance learner, with no other prospects, could learn how to operate a computer, speak English and qualify in an internationally recognised food and beverage management course. And the best part: 90% of students were granted bursaries from Absa Bank, meaning that all they would pay for the year would be R500.

Hazyview expanded and so did its numbers and offerings. By January 2016, 750 rural adults had graduated from the campus. Even more exciting, some creative timetabling had allowed the campus to double up: it now provided 21st century for adults and children. Over 2000 children per week plugged into the campus, enhancing English, mathematics and digital skills and boosting their results by over 30%.

At the campus, your age didn’t matter. Neither did the state of your bank account. We didn’t care whether or not you had graduated. We just wanted people to have access. And we wanted people to have fun.

If we rewind, all the way back to August 2012 and the grand opening of Hazyview, a very special guest, Mr. Trevor Manuel (one of South Africa’s most respected statesmen) said to our team:

“Make it work.”

For three and half years we have held those words close to our hearts. So when – sooner than we had ever thought – in March 2016, we stood looking up at a brand new campus of learning in Justicia (under the beautiful marula trees bordering the Sabi Sand Private Game Reserve), we were proud to think back to those three words.

Our leader, Kate Groch, shared the following words at the launch of Justicia Digital Learning Campus:

“When Mr. Trevor Manuel, previous Minister in the Presidency, came to the launch of Hazyview Digital Learning Campus in 2012, he left us with a challenge,” remarked GWF’s Founder and CEO, Ms. Kate Groch. “He simply said: ‘Make this thing work.’ It gives me great pleasure to report Mr. Manuel, that not only is Hazyview an award-winning campus, but its success has led to where we are today able to celebrate the opening of another campus, even more rural, where we will continue to lead this education revolution, challenging what we learn, how we learn and, most important, who has access to that learning.”

To which Mr. Manuel responded:

“The ultimate goal is that our children should at all times be exposed to an enhanced education process, one that will free them from the sorry state of poverty, ignorance and helplessness as well as allow them to be part of the digitization that is happening worldwide. GWF is helping these rural young people do just that. You should be called Splendid Work Foundation because your work is more than just good.”

Thank you Mr. Manuel. We are going to make it work, and we are going to continue to aspire to be splendid for the people of our country!

Good Work Foundation would like to extend its sincere thanks to the following partners and supporters who have been part of the dream to establish South Africa’s most rural digital campus: Mrs. Reginah Mhaule, MEC Mpumalanga Department of Education; Mr. Perry Sambo and Madlala High School; The Dulini Community Trust; Londolozi Private Game Reserve; Mr. David Ryan and Rhino Africa; Airlink; Absa Bank; T-Systems; The Sabi Sand Pfunanani Trust; and Leanna Knopik and the All Heart Fund.

The GWF team was all in pink and ready to welcome and direct guests to the launch of Justicia Campus.

The GWF team was all in pink and ready to welcome and direct guests to the launch of Justicia Campus.

All the GWF friends and partners came t witness as  the most rural campus of the future opened its doors to the Justicia community and its neighboring villages.

All the GWF friends and partners came to witness as the most rural campus of the future opened its doors to the Justicia community and its neighboring villages, enabling them with access to enhanced and digital education.

All the guests joined the GWF staff choir when they sang the national anthem to properly start the launch.

All the guests joined the GWF staff choir under the marula tress in pink decor, to sing the South African national anthem to properly start the launch.

IMG_8121

The door in the pink bow tie has been officially opened for the Justicia community to access world class digital education. Chief Ngonyama of Justica Campus was among the happiest community members to welcome this education campus, which for him meant that “our children will no longer have to travel for miles to get access to proper education.”

“When Mr. Trevor Manuel, previous Minister in the Presidency, came to the launch of Hazyview Digital Learning Campus in 2012, he left us with a challenge,“He simply said: ‘Make this thing work.’ It gives me great pleasure to report Mr Manuel, that not only is Hazyview an award-winning campus, but its success has led to where we are today able to celebrate the opening of another campus, even more rural, where we will continue to lead this education revolution, challenging what we learn, how we learn and, most important, who has access to that learning.”

“When Mr. Trevor Manuel, previous Minister in the Presidency, came to the launch of Hazyview Digital Learning Campus in 2012, he left us with a challenge,“He simply said: ‘Make this thing work.’ It gives me great pleasure to report Mr Manuel, that not only is Hazyview an award-winning campus, but its success has led to where we are today able to celebrate the opening of another campus, even more rural, where we will continue to lead this education revolution, challenging what we learn, how we learn and, most important, who has access to that learning.”

“The ultimate goal is that our children should at all times be exposed to an enhanced education process, one that will free them from the sorry state of poverty, ignorance and helplessness as well as allow them to be part of the digitization that is happening worldwide.

“The ultimate goal is that our children should at all times be exposed to an enhanced education process, one that will free them from the sorry state of poverty, ignorance and helplessness as well as allow them to be part of the digitization that is happening worldwide.

The Justicia Campus looked stunning with all the pink decor standing out among the marula tress.

The Justicia Campus looked stunning with all the pink decor standing out among the marula trees.

GWF's Justicia Campus Coordinator Linky Nkuna became so emotional at the launch when she realized "what the opening of the campus really meant for the people of Justicia, especially the youth."

GWF’s Justicia Campus Coordinator Linky Nkuna became emotional at the launch when she realized that “the opening of the campus actually means that the rural youth of Justicia now have access to world class education and an opportunity to paint their tomorrow as bright as they can.”

 

The pink colour has never looked more bright and beautiful like it did under the marula tress in rural Justicia.

The pink colour has never looked more bright and beautiful like it did under the marula tress in rural Justicia.

Compiled by GWF Media Academy.

Comments