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Month-by-month in 2018

What happens when generosity meets frugality, and this is just a taste!

July, August, September 2018

  • received the fabulous news that one of our university students earned top honors for her performance in Taxation 3: a rigorous course at the University of Fort Hare
  • set the date for our fall fundraiser: Saturday, November 3rd, from 6 - 11 pm, overlooking the Atlantic Ocean in Newport. Click here to buy your tickets today!
  • July 21st will participate in the Second Annual Newport Local Music and Arts Fair, where we will sell our Molly's Dollies, Xhosa anklets, and humanitarian bracelets
  • funded the upgrading of the Vusumzi Primary School clean water system: a new high-powered pump, improved pipes, higher-grade purification lighting, and security fencing are all in, and the water at Vusumzi is flowing better than ever - left
  • funded the completion of the Vusumzi Primary School kitchen, adding two sinks, a refrigerator, a deep-freezer, handmade cabinetry, extensive pantry storage, and an array of kitchen pots, pans, and other utensils to our already renovated floors and provision of electricity
  • approved the plans for the design of and then fully funded the furnishing of the new Universal Promise Academic Centre library - left, science lab, arts studio - left, and dance & music studio
  • were ebullient as the construction of the handmade woodwork and furnishings began for the Academic Centre
  • completed a first draft of the Universal Promise Volunteer Handbook
  • happily accepted five donated iPads to enhance communication and Internet research at Vusumzi Primary School

April, May, June 2018

  • asked the Universal Promise Academic Centre designer to visit local top-notch schools in Port Elizabeth, the closest city, to review their libraries, science lab, arts studios,  and dance & music studios and then to design something better 
  • hired a local designer to map out the furnishings of the new Universal Promise Academic Centre library, science lab, arts studio, and dance & music studio
  • hired our first university-supported graduate, local scholar Siyabulela Rabie, to translate the Universal Promise medical pamphlet from English to Xhosa
  • finished the funding for the printing of the Universal Promise medical pamphlet, which brings our primary focus - education - to the field of healthcare
  • mapped out the renovation of the Vusumzi Primary School kitchen
  • renovated the Vusumzi Primary School student and educator bathrooms by cleaning and repainting the interior, installing new bathroom stall doors, toilet paper holders, soap dispensers and state-of-the-art hand-dryers in response to health and environmental concerns
  • distributed uniforms to Vusumzi Primary School children while feeling humbled by the gratitude of countless gracious, devoted parents - left
  • continued to raise funds to fund the translation into Xhosa of the medical pamphlet and, ultimately, its printing and distribution 
  • fully employed the Vusumzi Primary School computer laboratory teacher for the second quarter of the year

January, February, March 2018

  • named the central meeting place of the new Vusumzi Primary School Universal Promise Academic Centre after Mzolisi Moses Nqontsha, affectionately called the co-founder of Universal Promise - left
  • celebrated the handover of the new Universal Promise Academic Centre to Vusumzi Primary School: emotions ran high, standing ovations were common, and tears ran freely
  • funded and oversaw an Ilizwe Empowerment business workshop with a distinguished Xhosa businesswoman from Cape Town
  • worked with Ilizwe Empowerment to design new bracelets for St. George's School and to create 500 Molly's Dollies, an increasingly popular symbol of women's empowerment
  • employed one dozen devoted Ilizwe crafters and paid them a wage that is three to four times their norm
  • led a volunteer trip with 15 St. George's students from Newport, Rhode Island and four chaperones
  • replenished the Vusumzi Primary School staff room with academic materials and manipulatives
  • repaired the Vusumzi Primary School lawnmower and weed-whacker so the amazing caretaker, James Dayile, in his new Universal Promise-purchased uniform and shoes, could do his job in style!
  • finished a first draft of the Universal Promise medical pamphlet, written in conjunction with South African and United States medical personnel, that will be distributed throughout Nomathamsanqa and at local clinics
  • hired a local contractor and his associates to renovate the Ilizwe Empowerment crafting center
  • purchased loads of crafting supplies for our Ilizwe Empowerment crafting program
  • brought Internet to Vusumzi Primary School for the first time ever, thereby opening up the world to the educators and their students
  • funded new school uniforms, shoes, backpacks, and a year's-worth of school supplies for every Uphuhliso program student, who enjoyed a crazy 100% pass rate in 2017, a full 33% higher than the norm - left
  • fully employed the Vusumzi Primary School computer laboratory teacher for the first quarter of the year