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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

UFS finances are fundamentally sound
2007-12-01

The finances of the University of the Free State (UFS) remain fundamentally sound and a higher than expected surplus of about R26 million was achieved in the 2007 budget.

This announcement was made last week during the last meeting of the UFS Council by Prof. Frederick Fourie, Rector and Vice-Chancellor.

“Up to now, we could finance the considerable investments in the infrastructure from discretionary funds, in spite of the fact that Council granted us permission during 2005/06 to take up a loan of R50 million for this purpose,” said Prof. Fourie.

The higher than expected surplus of about R26 million will be used among other things for the financing of infrastructure in order to further postpone the taking up of a loan.

In support of the drive to reposition the UFS nationally as a university that is successfully integrating excellence and diversity, R5 million will be made available from the surplus for this purpose.

The Council also approved the following allocations for 2008 for the key strategic pillars of a good practice budget for the university:

Information sources: R21,1 million
IT infrastructure: R3,5 million
Replacing expensive equipment: R7,05 million
Research: R18,1 million
Capital expenditure: R28,2 million
Maintenance capital assets: R18,2 million
Reserves: R6,3 million
Personal computers for the computer laboratory: R3,5 million

For the Qwaqwa Campus R2,5 million has been set aside for these issues.

In terms of strategic priorities R8 million was allocated for the academic clusters, R2 million for equitability, diversity and redress and R6 million for equity.

The projected income for 2008 will be R849 million, while the projected expenditure, excluding transfers, will be R694 million.

“Council further approved that discretionary strategic funds be largely voted to the further upgrading of the physical infrastructure, especially the Chemistry Building, the computer laboratory building, examination venues and the Joolkol,” said Prof. Fourie.

According to Prof. Fourie, funds have been reserved for the development of the academic clusters, as well as the continuation and acceleration of the transformation programme of the UFS.

“We have also managed to revise the conditions of employment of contract appointments and align it with the latest labour practices. The phasing in of the fringe benefits of this specific group of staff members will commence in 2008,” said Prof. Fourie.

Given the dependence of the income of the UFS on student numbers, a task team was formed last year to investigate the continued financial sustainability of the UFS. The core of this task team’s recommendations is:

to increase the third income stream by using the academic clusters as the main strategy; and to apply strategies such as the recruitment and extension of the postgraduate and foreign student corps, increase the income from donations and fundraising, etc.

Media Release
Issued by: Lacea Loader
Assistant Director: Media Liaison
Tel: 051 401 2584
Cell: 083 645 2454
E-mail: loaderl.stg@ufs.ac.za
30 November 2007
 

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