Wednesday, 27 June 2012

Just two days left to nominate your philanthropy heroes for awards

Published: 27 June 2012

Nominations for the prestigious annual Inyathelo Philanthropy Awards close on Friday, 29 June. The annual national awards were established six years ago to acknowledge, celebrate and honour those whose personal giving has contributed towards sustainable social change in South Africa and has inspired others to give.

Previous awardees include the likes of Archbishop Emeritus Desmond Tutu, the Ackerman family, Kanchana Moodliar (founder of the Saris for Good Karma Project), Bridgette Mamugubudi (who set up the Litshani Vhana Vhade Foundation for disadvantaged children in rural Limpopo), best-selling author Richard Mason (who established the Kay Mason Foundation in memory of his late sister), Refiloe Seseane (a TV personality who started the organisation 18twenty8 to empower young women) and Dwyn Griesel (founder of the Kronendal Music Academy of Hout Bay).

Inyathelo programme director Gabrielle Ritchie says they are looking for extraordinary people who are actively working in small or big ways to improve their communities and our country - be it through, for example, the arts, education, health, research or the provision of basic services.

“Philanthropy is dependent on the interest, passion, commitment, generosity and foresight of individuals wanting to make a difference, and our awards seek to recognise and commend these people publicly. Individual giving is a key source of donor money in South Africa and we really need to grow this in a big way. Philanthropists play a critical role in providing services to poor and vulnerable people, a voice to those who have not yet been heard, and innovative solutions to our many social problems without always insisting on making a profit,” explains Ritchie.

Anyone is invited to nominate their philanthropy heroes by filling in a simple online form on the Philanthropy SA website at or by contacting Inyathelo’s philanthropy coordinator Alfred Thutloa on or 021 465 6981/2. You can also submit a nomination via the Inyathelo Facebook page: The awards will be announced at a gala event on 30 October 2012 in Johannesburg.

Thutloa says the awardees are chosen according to specific criteria by a panel of eight highly respected judges, including Zenariah Barends (GreyMatter Finch), Amanda Bloch (Children’s Hospital Trust) and Amelia Jones (Community Chest Western Cape). “We are looking for philanthropy champions who have demonstrated initiative and leadership, and who have used their personal funds, no matter how large or small, to make a difference and inspire others to give. It is critical that individual South Africans begin to support the civil society organisations that form the backbone of our democracy and social welfare system. The impact of recent funding shortfalls is having dire consequences, particularly in the areas of education, health care and social justice. We believe local philanthropists can help bridge the funding gap left by international donors,” says Thutloa.

Tuesday, 26 June 2012

Operation Khanyisa talent shows bring home the message

Prize giving ceremonies, hosted in April by Operation Khanyisa, rewarded the 1,500 children and community members who were rallied into talent show competitions at five focus sites around the country last year.

These competitions saw participants relay the campaign’s educational messages in poetry, poster design, coloring-in, drama, singing and dancing in a fun and creative way.

Maboe Maphaka, National Sponsor for Eskom’s Energy Losses Management Program (ELP) and Operation Khanyisa’s champion says:  “We received a very positive response from the schools and had great attendance with the whole community getting involved.

“Winners were excited to receive prizes and supporters cheered for their teams.  Teachers and parents were very thankful for prizes won and appreciated the overall campaign impact on their lives. Our stakeholders showed their support as well, along with the coordinators and field workers who made sure that the events ran smoothly.”

Operation Khanyisa is a behavioral-change campaign intended to educate the public about the negative effects of electricity theft. It aims to mobilize all South Africans towards legal, safe and efficient power use and encourage the reporting of electricity theft.

The campaign targets all power users including industrial, manufacturing, agricultural and commercial sectors and residents in general.

“The response from the community exceeded our expectations.  Well done to all who participated.  Their talents shouldn’t stop here but must be taken forward.  I encourage the learners to remember the message which they need to propagate.  Every participant was enthusiastic and incorporated the key messages into their performances very well.”

“It was evident that hard work and effort had gone into the talent shows as the objectives were achieved across various ages and groups,” concludes Mr Maphaka. 

For more on Operation Khanyisa head on to 


Tuesday, 19 June 2012

IREX shares stories of hope - celebrating AFRICA DAY (25 May2012)

Although IREX began its work in the Soviet Union more than 40 years ago, today we implement a wide portfolio of programs in 41 countries in Africa. More than 20% of our program budget goes to African civil society actors, journalists, teachers, youth, and community leaders. Our programs draw on local expertise, NGOs and staff to deliver sustainable solutions well-suited for the African context.

In honor of Africa Day, and the in spirit of unity and diversity it commemorates, we are pleased to share our new factsheet on IREX in Africa and some snapshots and thoughts from recent IREX visits to Africa.

Susanna worked with teachers in Ghana - The TGC teachers (U.S.) and TEA/ILEP host teachers (Ghanaian) found solidarity and built lasting relationships through identifying ways in which teachers across the globe work in the midst of adversity to meet the ever increasing needs of students and communities.

Robin and Aimee visited universities in Tanzania and Uganda: “This is exactly what we need!” was the one phrase that was repeated time and again in Uganda, Tanzania, and Ghana during outreach for the University Administration Support Program.  It is incredibly rewarding to be working on a program that is such a perfect fit for the development of much-desired management reform in institutions of higher education in Africa.

Kathy represented IREX’s senior management in Liberia:  Enjoyed seeing the CSML program in action, visiting a community library in downtown Monrovia. There is a children’s corner where children can come and read books, books for adults and space for various  trainings for adults.

Anne is in Liberia today, exploring ways to use theater for conflict resolution: Local theater troupes engage community members in an interactive drama about land ownership conflict in Westpoint, one of Monrovia’s toughest neighborhoods.  Manjoe Borlay of Flomo Theater, a partner in IREX’s CSML program, explains, “It’s so important to create a space for communities to talk about these things and to come up with their own solutions.”

Story by IREX

Thursday, 14 June 2012

Angolan refugees return from Namibia

Angolan refugees who had been living in Namibia for over 20 years have been handed over to the Luanda Government as part of the tripartite voluntary repatriation.
Just last week, a group of 141 Angolans, who had been staying at Namibia’s Osire refugee camp, also left for their country.
That was the first group of Angolans to be repatriated through the Katwitwi border post, while three groups consisting of over 800 refugees had already gone home through Namibia’s Ohangwena Region, to the Namacunde transit centre in the southern region.
Kavango Regional Governor Maurus Nekaro exchanged documents with the Vice-Governor of the Kuando-Kubango Province in Angola, Mr Pedro Camelo, signifying the handing-over of the refugees.
The voluntary repatriation, of mostly women and children, was witnessed by the UNHCR Country Representative, Mr Lawrence Oba Mgbangson.


Dr Mgbangson thanked Namibia for having assisted the refugees, especially with the provision of medical care and education.
He said the Namibian Government had successfully protected the rights of refugees, as prescribed in the UNHCR Convention.
About 3,200 Angolan refugees have registered to be repatriated.
Meanwhile, Mr Camelo reminded the refugees that their country was undergoing reconstruction after a long civil war.
He indicated that peace had been restored and the returnees should actively contribute to the development of the country once they were successfully integrated.
The Commissioner of Refugees in Namibia, Mr Nkrumah Mushelenga, said the refugees received a dignified welcome at the reception centre at the Kayila Village.
The final repatriation is slated for June 27.
Close to 5,000 refugees from Angola were still in Namibia even after repatriation of 15,000 others between 2002 and 2007.

Story By  Africa Review

Monday, 11 June 2012

I can read...My first book in my own language

This follows several visits with our simple reading scheme and “class in a box” methodology.  We are working with 5 villages in the remote and almost inaccessible Zambezi Delta in Mozambique. A community so isolated, with no schools where there are only a handful of people who have ever had the opportunity to learn to read.

A very simple reading programme has been developed teaching the vowel sounds and then enough of the initial consonants to be able to decipher simple words as well as practising reading cards of the words from the book. The preparation and foundation laid prior to this outreach was key and enabled the people to more confidently achieve reading the book. It was a great privileged for all the team members who were able to participate in this outreach

Now this community is able to read a book for the first time in many of their lives in their own language! Thanks to the small team Mercy Air South Africa and a dedicated handful of people from the Marromeu Youth With A Mission Bible school and other educators.

One of the team members who is a teacher in Mozambique commented: “To be very honest – this was one of my most fruitful experiences in education – EVER! I came to learn and I got exactly what I came for. The creative way of presenting this to illiterate people was amazing and something we would love to copy in the Chimoio area of Mozambique. It has changed my mindset on how to teach the precious illiterate. It was amazing to see the progress some of the little children have made, both with reading and number-work.  For me, the highlight of this last trip was watching grown men slowly deciphering each word, pointing at it with their fingers, as they read their first reading book. Such an awesome achievement!” Francois Rauch

It was such a delight to see Mae Christina READING the first reading book in a village and the awesome silence as the whole village sat riveted listening to the story.

The learning process, which God is revealing to us, is so effective.  The active, hands on learning experience has been made to be such fun, the whole community is learning together.  Everyone looks forward to each outreach with great excitement and in each village people who have better reading skills, are teaching others using the materials developed for this task. All the materials are culturally appropriate, within the life world of this remote community.  This,  of course, is the best environment for learning.  God continues to grow and develop the programme in all areas and it is an honour to be part of His BIG PLAN.

Story by Mercy Air

Thursday, 7 June 2012

At Butaro Hospital, Rwanda, the first doses of chemotherapy are delivered

This May, clinical staff in Rwanda took a momentous step toward offering comprehensive cancer care at Butaro Hospital in the northern, rural Burera District. During the week of May 13, the hospital run by Inshuti Mu Buzima, PIH's sister organisation in Rwanda began administering chemotherapy to nine patients undergoing treatment for cervical, breast, or rectal cancer.
to find out more CLICK HERE

Story by Partners in Health - PIH.ORG

Increased income for onion farmers.

Onion farmers in central Kenya are receiving almost three times more money for their crops thanks to an initiative funded by FARM-Africa's Maendeleo Agricultural Technology Fund (MATF).
Before the initiative farmers had no way to store their onions after they had harvested them. This meant that they had to sell them as soon as they were harvested when prices were at their lowest. Each farmer had no choice but to sell his produce to local traders as soon as possible whilst the onions were still in good condition. The local traders would play the farmers off against each other, forcing prices down even further.
FARM-Africa has helped the onion farmers to form onion farming groups. The groups have been given the training they need to work as a marketing association (with around 20 farmer groups in each marketing association). The lead group in each association then helps all the members to decide together what a fair price would be for their onion harvest. If every group in the association then offers the traders the same price then they have no choice but to pay it if they wish to purchase onions from the village.
The groups also received training in how best to store the onions to prevent them from rotting. MATF funds paid for a demonstration site where a storage facility was built so that all the other groups could replicate it using the knowledge and skills that they had learnt.
Before the project farmers were receiving an average of around 10 pence per kilo of onions. The price is now around 28 pence per kilo.

Story by Farm Africa - FARM AFRICA

World Food Programme - Bringing Rays Of Hope In Niger.

Nutrition programmes are bearing fruit in Niger where special food products are helping to protect young children from malnutrition as their families struggle to make it through a long and difficult drought.       
Fighting hunger worldwide - World Food Programme is a UN agency and the largest humanitarian organisation in the world.
Story by WFP - WFP.ORG

Back in the Saddle...

Stories of Hope... (Formally affectionately known as "Hope in Africa") is getting back in the saddle.

After a couple of years of silence we're doing it agian... building nations by spreading Stories of Hope... in your country ;-)

Starting in Africa again we're planning to infect the world with Hope... join us!!

Give us your stories and let's become agents of change through Hope. Send your stories to