Implementation of a Research and Development Initiative in collaboration with Non-Profit Organisations (NPOs) in Mangaung

This project entailed the implementation of a research and development initiative under the auspices of the Division: Service Learning at the University of the Free State in collaboration with key academic departments and selected partners from the Non-Profit Organisation (NPO) sector in the Mangaung (Bloemfontein) area of the Free State, South Africa.

The project unfolded against the background of a proven lack of institutional knowledge pertaining to issues of governance, sustainability, financial management, fund-raising and monitoring and evaluation among NPOs in the  Mangaung area. The project explicitly strived to address this challenge in all of its interventions. Higher Education Institutions (HEIs), among which the UFS, have a vested interest in partnering with and capacitating NPOs as the representatives of the communities that they serve.

Both sectors are in need of information and results stemming from projects like this in order to optimise the performance of such NPOs, strengthen their institutional linkages with HEIs like the UFS and measure the impact of the involvement of HEIs with NPOs in a development environment.

The May and Stanley Smith Charitable Trust Partners

Description: Service Learning Keywords: non-profit organisatin, Reach, May & Stanley Smith Charitable Trust, Service Learning

From left: Mr Willem Ellis (UFS Project Manager); Mr Malefane Mokoena (MUCPP); Mrs Marietha Johnson (Child Welfare Bloemfontein & Childline Free State); Mr Given Shingange (NTDA); Mrs Avril Snyman (Lebone Village); Prof Mabel Erasmus (UFS CHESD, Division: Service Learning – Grant-holder); Mr Patrick Kaars (REACH Bloemfontein) Absent: Ms Thokozile Dube (DEDI)

The following four NPOs active in the Mangaung (Bloemfontein) area were chosen to collaborate in the project;

  • REACH (Heidedal): A voluntary organisation assisting and developing youth in becoming strong and respected role models in thriving communities.
  • Child Welfare Bloemfontein & Childline Free State: A non-governmental organisation rendering comprehensive child protection services to children and families at risk – among which statutory services, a 24 hours toll-free telephone service, social work services, training and support for crèches and child care forums.
  • Lebone Village: A faith-based organisation working as a holistic care centre for children infected or affected by HIV/AIDS and poverty.
  • Mangaung–University of the Free State Community Partnership Programme (MUCPP): An organisation supporting communities in issues pertaining to health and social care; sustainable agriculture, economic and management development; sports development as well as arts and culture development.

During the project the following two NPOs were invited to come on board:

  • Diketso Eseng Dipuo Community Development Trust (DEDI): An organisation working with families and local organisations, empowering and strengthening them to improve and render better care to young children.
  • Nhlamolo Training and Development Agency (NTDA): An organisation striving to empower communities through information literacy training.

For download:  Final Report August 2011: May & Smith Charitable Trust

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