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03 April 2019 | Story Xolisa Mnukwa | Photo Vhugala Nthakheni
Uhuru Qwaqwa Arrival
The #UFSWalkToUhuru team arrives at the UFS Qwaqwa Campus on Friday 22 March.

The University of the Free State (UFS) Division of Student Affairs, in collaboration with the UFS Office for International Affairs, have joined hands to drive a fundraising and student-accessibility initiative dubbed, ‘The Walk to Uhuru’ (#UFSWalktoUhuru), which is aimed at raising funds and advocating for the educational rights of the less privileged. 

The project aims to raise funds in excess of R2 million from the public and stakeholders affiliated with the UFS (Kovsie staff and students). The project derives from the 2018/2019 UFS Institutional Student Representative Council (ISRC) mandate ‘Students Must Graduate’. The ISRC mandate aims to source funding opportunities for UFS students to register, and to complete their studies across all three campuses in 2020 and beyond.

The first leg of the project, a 350 km walk from the Bloemfontein to the Qwaqwa Campus, has already taken place and concluded on Friday, 22 March 2019 as planned. The #UFSWalkToUhuru team successfully completed the first leg of their journey to academic freedom for financially disadvantaged students at the UFS. The Uhuru team is now focusing its attention on the second leg and is determined to take on Mount Kilimanjaro (Uhuru) from 20 June to 20 July 2019.

The team sat down for a debriefing session to unpack the overall experience and result of the first half of the initiative, and they all agreed that the walk to Qwaqwa was an enlightening experience. It was a walk that comprised learning opportunities, team building, and goal crushing.

According to Rethabile Motseki, member of the #UFSWalkToUhuru team, the walk to Qwaqwa made a significant impact on the project, as the university community is now aware of the significant goals that the team is trying to accomplish. The team has also resumed their fitness-training programme to ensure that they are ready to take on the Uhuru climb in June.

A media briefing will take place shortly (date to be confirmed) to detail the ongoing fundraising initiatives rolled out by the #UFSWalkToUhuru team.  We implore you, and the nation as a whole, to help establish a better future for disadvantaged UFS students by donating to the initiative.

Students, staff, and the public can support the cause and make contributions/donations to the initiative by visiting the UFS Walk to Uhuru #givengain account page.

For more information, contact UFS SRC President, Sonwabile Dwaba, on DwabaSJ@ufs.ac.za  or Rethabile Motseki on MotsekiR@ufs.ac.za  

News Archive

Wayde, Karla shine again at KovsieSport gala night
2016-10-27

Description: Wayde en Karla Tags: Wayde en Karla

Tannie Ans Botha, Wayde van Niekerk’s coach,
received a special award from KovsieSport
at the annual Sport Stars Awards ceremony.
From the left, are: DB Prinsloo, Director of
KovsieSport, Botha, and Van Niekerk.
Photo: Hannes Naude


The choice of Wayde van Niekerk as Sportsman of the Year was no surprise, but with this fourth consecutive title he joins select company at the University of the Free State (UFS). The 400 m Olympic champion equalled Franz Kruger’s record for the highest number of successive sports awards for men.

In total, Kruger (discus) was named Sportsman of the Year five times – 1997, 1998, 1999, 2000 and 2002. He is also the most awarded Kovsie sportsman.

Blose and Puren rewarded as junior stars

On 20 October 2016, Van Niekerk and the Protea netball player Karla Mostert were honoured as Sportsman and Sportswoman of the Year at Leopards & Lace in Bloemfontein for a second consecutive year.

It was only the second time that KovsieSport awarded the same sports stars two years in a row – formerly it was Van Niekerk and the Protea netball captain, Maryka Holtzhausen (2013 and 2014).

Kwenzo Blose, who played for the South Africa U20 rugby team at the Junior World Cup, was named Junior Sportsman. The South Africa U21 netball captain Alicia Puren, who helped her team qualify for the 2017 U21 World Cup tournament, was crowned Junior Sportswoman for 2016.

“Wayde van Niekerk gained
unprecedented international
fame, which added untold
value to the KovsieSport
brand.”

Prinsloo proud of high quality
According to DB Prinsloo, director of KovsieSport, his department is proud of the high quality of its sports stars. “Wayde van Niekerk gained unprecedented international fame, which added untold value to the KovsieSport brand. Although Karla Mostert might have experienced tougher opposition from her fellow nominees, she was a real star for the Protea netball team.”

To be awarded, a sports star should be a registered UFS student and comply with specific academic requirements. Van Niekerk (BA Marketing), Mostert (masters in Dietetics), Blose (BA Law), and Puren (Education) meet these requirements.

In order to determine the winners, KovsieSport also uses criteria such as international participation, a contribution to UFS awareness, and excellence in sport.

“To be awarded, a sports star
should be a registered UFS
student and comply with specific
academic requirements.”

Cronjé still holds overall record
Sarina Cronjé holds the record for the most successive UFS awards (five).

Cronjé, a Springbok track and cross-country athlete, was Sportswoman of the Year from 1977 to 1981. The number of titles held by this senior officer at KovsieSport is the most by a woman.

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