Kholisa Thomas.
Kholisa Thomas.
Image: Supplied

KHOLISA THOMAS | Founder of Kholisa Thomas Art Advisory and Artfull

Worthy cause you’re supporting this Dec? Ubuntu Pathways, which provides household stability and health and educational services to over 2,000 orphaned and vulnerable children in Port Elizabeth’s townships.

Tell us a bit about the work it does? When we think about development and social impact, too much of it is characterised by reaching more children for less money. Ubuntu has flipped that approach on its head. We have spent 20 years working in one 7km zone, going deeper into the community. Our model is about taking children from cradle to career and investing in them all the days of their lives.

We have over 2 000 children in Ubuntu, which means over 2 000 different educational pathways. This is a huge undertaking. Our world-class facility, the Ubuntu Centre, provides health, remedial, psychological, and vocational care for our children from birth to matric. This year, we opened a school to provide exceptional education to our children and the Ubuntu Advisory to share what we have learnt with other social entrepreneurs. My online platform, Artfull, connects South African artists with new art buyers, so I use my relationship with South Africa’s most brilliant artists to support Ubuntu’s life-changing work.

How can readers help? Go to ubuntupathways.org and donate directly there.

MARK READ | Director of Everard Read and Circa

Worthy cause you’re supporting this Dec? WWF SA

Mark Read.
Mark Read.
Image: Supplied

Tell us a bit about the work it does? Through a process of rigorous scientific analysis, WWF highlights the ecological and environmental challenges that contemporary South Africa faces. Humankind expects the natural environment to deliver ever greater ecological services annually. More clean water, more minerals, more arable soils, more fish from the oceans. This is clearly not sustainable. WWF highlights the realities for us and reminds us that this largely arid southern tip of Africa needs to be nurtured with care and foresight if our children are to have a life where they can look around with wonder at a beautiful South Africa.

How can readers help? Make contact and learn about this wonderful organisation at wwf.org.za

AMANDA DAMBUZA | CEO of Uyandiswa

Worthy cause you’re supporting this Dec? I rally behind many organisations doing wonderful work in our society; however, the one I am supporting this festive season is Women and Men Against Child Abuse (WMACA).

Amanda Dambuza.
Amanda Dambuza.
Image: Supplied

Tell us a bit about the work it does? It’s a non-profit child protection organisation committed to fighting for both the rights of the child and to end the abuse of children in South Africa. Theirs is a multifaceted, dynamic, and aggressive offensive against any form of abuse and gender violence. Under the umbrella body of WMACA there are three Kidz Clinics — in Alexandra, Boksburg, and Pretoria — and various prevention and diversion programmes to assist abused children. Besides actual service delivery, WMACA is very vocal in its advocacy role, using the media and other platforms to highlight any injustices that abused children have to endure through inadequate judicial processes. Its main objectives are to provide free medical and therapeutic intervention and treatment services to abused children — a one-stop holistic basket of services to abused and vulnerable children and their parents, and to educate and empower other children to prevent abuse. I am especially passionate about this organisation because I am a survivor of a very traumatic and abusive childhood. I care that children know they have someone they can talk to and there is a place where they can go for help.

How can readers help? Visit wmaca.org to find out how you can help with funding, clinic and legal support, and driving the organisation’s message.

SIOBHAN RYAN | Director and co-founder of C&S Ryan

Worthy cause you’re supporting this Dec? We are working with Unicef on two projects: the first with its environmental team on a project which allows for better data collection on air pollution in Africa. The other project very dear to us is the Unicef Isibindi Safe Parks project aimed at children in the Eastern Cape.

Siobahn Ryan.
Siobahn Ryan.
Image: Supplied

Tell us a bit about the work it does? Unicef advocates for the voice and rights of the child. We love working alongside the organisation because those who work for Unicef truly believe in the cause. After hearing a number of children speak of their rights under the Convention of the Rights of the Child at the UN General Assembly, we felt compelled to do something to assist in climate change and protecting the environment for children. With better understanding of the levels of pollution our children are exposed to, we can tackle and correct it. The environmental data collection project will essentially lead to a decrease in health issues as well as make an impact on climate change. What we love about the Isibindi Safe Parks initiative is that it takes a holistic approach. The social grant allows for the training of childcare workers and emotional and academic support for children in communities that have so little.

How can readers help? If you can donate even R1 to Unicef it will make a difference, and never underestimate the value of time. Find out how to volunteer or donate at unicef.org/southafrica

MICHAEL JORDAAN | Montegray Capital

Worthy cause you’re supporting this Dec? I love start-ups because they are the best way to drive society forward in a sustainable way.

Michael Jordaan.
Michael Jordaan.
Image: Supplied

The tech start-ups that I back all solve problems in society. Seen from an entrepreneurial perspective, many of our problems are business opportunities.

My best cause is Project CodeX.

Tell us a bit about the work it does? We train junior Java software developers. Many come from disadvantaged backgrounds and more than 80% of graduates get a white-collar job soon after graduating. This solves not only youth unemployment but also the skills shortage faced by many corporates and start-ups.

How can readers help? Anyone can help, either by sponsoring a student or by employing a coder. We cater for specific training needs of corporates too. 

 From the December edition of Wanted 2019.

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