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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

UFS meets church leaders
2011-09-14

Our university is fully committed to working with community structures whose vision and mission is to enhance and enrich the lives of those who are less fortunate.

These were the words of the Vice-Rector: External Relations, Dr Choice Makhetha, during a recent visit to the Bopanang Stimulation Centre where she met with the Qwaqwa Ministers Forum under the leadership of Elder Tumaka Tlooko and Rev. Paulos Mohatlane.

“We would not be doing justice to ourselves as the university if we are not responsive to the voices of the needy in our communities,” said Dr Makhetha to a hall packed with ministers of different churches from all corners of Qwaqwa.

This one-year-old structure has already seen numerous successes, one of which is the new working relationship with our university’s Qwaqwa Campus, which has committed itself to providing these ministers with short courses to empower them in full.

Bopanang Stimulation Centre was in a festive mood as the children sang songs of worship, thus forgetting their daily challenges caused by their various disabilities.

Dr Makhetha was accompanied by our Qwaqwa Campus Principal, Dr Elias Malete, and the Head of Administration, Teboho Manchu.

 

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