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25 April 2019 | Story Mamosa Makaya

Since 2016, the University of the Free State Center for Universal Access and Disability Support (CUADS) has received a grant from First National Bank worth R2 498 000, which supports tertiary bursaries for students with disabilities. Bursary holders are funded through CUADS, as the administrator of the bursaries.
  
These are students enrolled for various academic programmes who require academic assistance and/or assistive devices such as electronic handheld magnifiers, laptops, and hearing aids. The FNB grant also covers tuition, accommodation, study material and books, and meals.  The success of the grant is already evident, with one of the recipients having graduated with a Bachelor of Arts degree in December 2018. A second student was capped at the April 2019 graduations with a BSc Honours in Quantity Surveying.
 
Supporting the principles of the ITP

The UFS received the grant from FNB in instalments, starting in the 2016 academic year to date, supporting the needs of 40 disabled students. This grant and the work of CUADS speaks to and supports the principles of the Integrated Transformation Plan (ITP), namely inclusivity, transformation, and diversity. The vision of the Universal Access work stream is to enable the UFS to create an environment where students with disabilities can experience all aspects of student life equal to their non-disabled peers. The ITP provides for the recognition of the rights of people with disabilities as an important lesson in social justice and an opportunity to reinforce university values.

The successful administration of the grant to benefit past and present students is a ‘feather in the cap’ of CUADS, and is a shining example of the impact of public private investment and the endless possibilities that open up when there is a commitment to developing future leaders in academic spaces, allowing them to thrive by creating a learning environment that is welcoming and empowering. 



News Archive

School of Nursing receives a considerable grant
2011-06-01

Our School of Nursing once again became the proud recipient of a grant from the Atlantic Philanthropies, an international organization dedicated to “bringing about lasting changes in the lives of disadvantaged and vulnerable people”.

Atlantic Philanthropies granted millions of rands to South African nursing training institutions via University Based Nursing Education (UNEDSA), which will provide six recipient institutions the opportunity to transform nursing academic programmes in South Africa over a period of four years.

We recently received a R3 100 000 grant for the school to transform nursing scholarship and clinical practice. This is but the latest installment in a total grant of R16 million.

The School of Nursing, under the leadership of Prof. Anita van der Merwe, former Head of the School of Nursing, submitted a proposal to UNEDSA and was selected as one of the six recipients of the award. The school is now at the beginning of the third financial year of the project.

According to Dr Annali Fichardt from the School of Nursing, the school established a unique Virtual Health Teaching and Learning facility for training students in a non-threatening, simulated environment and to prepare nurses to be capable and to function optimally in the dynamic health-care environment. This provides opportunities for experimentation and sharing of integrated teaching and learning in nursing education.

The project helped establish a new unit for continuing professional development and research capacity development to serve practicing nurses and staff members of the School of Nursing. These initiatives will result in a fully transformed and accredited portfolio of programmes at undergraduate, post-basic and postgraduate levels to meet the needs of a range of health-care settings and learners.

The School of Nursing hopes to create an innovative teaching and learning environment that empowers students and professional nurses to become clinically excellent, able to practice independently in both resource-poor and technology-rich areas, and manage such complexities in an innovative way.

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