An End-of-Year Event for our Bursary Students

The end of the academic year has come around again and to celebrate Masicorp recently took our bursary students out for lunch at The Fisherman’s Pub & Grill in Kommetjie.

students   oranges me-simThanks to programme manager Susan de Vaux for providing a small gift to each student.

more penspenpensSadly not everyone could join us. At this time of year many students travel back to the Eastern Cape to visit their families. First year law student Siviwe Makelebi had already left, but we were delighted to receive this lovely message from him before he departed:

Good day

I am writing this letter to show my appreciation to the Masicorp bursary program. You might have already been told about the goodness and effectiveness of the work that you do, but I think it is of utmost importance that you are constantly reminded that your work is, indeed, touching lives.The existence of this bursary program has had a significant and a profound impact on the life of Masiphumelele community as a whole.

If it was not for the selflessness that the members and volunteers of Masicorp had shown, I would not have made it this far in life.

Believe me, your work in the community is, for all intents and purposes, changing lives. Your work deserve recognition. Unlike most bursary programs, you show concern about the well being of the students. I believe that you are the catalyst of change in that community.

I say all this from the bottom of my heart, Thank you Masicorp.

Regards

Siviwe Makeleni

Well done to all of our bursary students that have completed another year of higher education – and we look forward to another successful year in 2015.

Artwork From The Stay & Play Christmas Party

Masicorp’s Mother & Toddler Group (Stay & Play) continues to be held at the Masiphumelele library and has been a big success throughout the year. Each week there are 10-25 toddlers attending (with their mothers).

Our Facebook followers will have seen examples of the artwork they have produced earlier in the year. We are pleased to present their latest efforts, which we are sure you will agree highlight the advances the children are making. The work below was produced and exhibited at the end of year Stay & Play Christmas party.

cups-xmas

bottle-xmasxmas-starsOur thanks to the volunteers and paid helpers from the community that make all this possible (from left to right Sophie, Maria, Charley, and Charley).

volunteers

A Successful Year for English Please

As another school year comes to a close there is particularly good news to report from the English Please programme at Fish Hoek Primary school. Masicorp volunteer, Milli Firth is a specialist English teacher who gives her time to tutor the students from Masiphumelele that attend the school. The programme has been very successful as we have reported previously.

The grade 7 group that finished this year was the first group that Milli has taken all the way through their time at Fish Hoek Primary. We met up with the group in the week before school finished to chat about their experiences on the programme and their hopes for the future. The ability to speak English fluently gives the students a massive advantage in life, and this was highlighted by their placement in high school. As early as June, all five of the girls in the group were placed in Fish Hoek High School and are looking forward to the significant step up in learning, with new subjects to master and new friends to make.

Gift is the solitary boy in the class and has an even larger adventure to look forward to following his award of a bursary to attend Bishops All-Boys Independent College School in Cape Town. While the girls will remain living in Masiphumelele, Gift will become a boarder, sharing a room with five other learners. Bishop’s is one of the most prestigious schools in the Western Cape, with a long history of high academic achievement. It will be a huge challenge for him, but it is a fantastic life opportunity that has been made possible by the tutoring he has received in the English Please class.

EP1All of the students were able to talk enthusiastically about their future hopes and conversation turned to their ambitions in life after school. Gift has an interest in the arts and hopes his experience at Bishops will enable him to work in drama. The girls were hoping that Fish Hoek High will help prepare them for careers in the travel industry, the legal system or social work. Or in one case the opportunity to be on TV – doing absolutely anything – as long as it is on TV.

Well done to all of the students and to teacher Milli. We wish them all well in their future studies and will be sure to check in again to see how they are progressing.

Cycling for Ukhanyo School

Masiorp is always very grateful to our generous donors, and particularly those that go out of their way to raise funds through completing events such as the Two Oceans Marathon and the Cape Argus. Many donors also raise funds for our projects by arranging events overseas. A few months ago, two ex-students of our Ukhanyo School volunteer, Fran Loudon, held a fundraising cycling event with their friends. They had met Fran during her time teaching in County Clare Ireland, and they cycled around Achill Island off County Mayo. At 24 x 19 km Achill Island is the largest Achill Island - on the edge of the Atlantic off County“island off Ireland”. It is a beautiful location with sandy beaches, crystal clear water, striking mountains and sheer cliffs. However, it is also a wild place on the edge of the Atlantic and the weather can be challenging. Fortunately, it seems the sun was shining and the Island was at her best on the day of the cycle ride.

The main organiser was Sinead Greene, and she was supported by others including Sarah Bhreathnach (that’s Walsh in Irish!). Sinead is now a lawyer and Sarah now a teacher. This was Sinead’s first fundraising event and the fact that they thought of us at Masicorp led to Fran commenting:

“It’s so great to see young professionals caring and organising for those with fewer opportunities, in this case ‘the poorest of the poor’. It really warms my heart”.

Sarah Walshe Cycling for UkhanyoSinead Greene cycling for UkhnayoThey raised Euro 1000 which will be used to continue funding the ‘Classroom Makeover Project” in Ukhanyo School, which is now in its second year now of providing, repairing, and replacing many of the resources needed for teachers to teach and learners to learn. This includes building works, furniture, windows, doors, chairs, desks, ceilings and shelves, not to mention teaching aids like whiteboards, maps, posters etc. Running parallel to these physical improvements and for sustainability, the whole school community is engaged in an education and ownership program for their new and improved resources as we reported on in a posting earlier this year.

This Project has made a big difference, is very popular within the school, and we really appreciate the support of Sinead and her friends.

Masicorp AGM 2014

The Masicorp Annual General Meeting was held at the English Lab in Ukhanyo Primary School yesterday. Thank you to everyone that attended.

For those who were unable to attend we are pleased to present the slide show given by Deputy CEO Milli Firth. Click on the individual slides below to see them in more detail.

If you would like to receive an electronic copy of any of the documents mentioned in the slideshow, or the full minutes from the meeting, please contact us via the mail form HERE.