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R2,5 million received from FNB Fund for Universal Access and Disability Support
2017-10-18

Description: FNB CUADS Funding Tags: FNB CUADS Funding
Tinotenda Magaya (left at the back), Robert Shoba and
Manus van Rooyen are some of the CUADS students
who will benefit from the money donated by the FNB Fund.
In front are Martie Miranda (left), Head of CUADS, and
Thandeka Rantsi from the FNB Fund.
Photo: Jóhann Thormählen

Funding isn’t only about giving money to provide access to education. There are many factors that contribute to the successful completion of studies, and this is even more applicable to students with disabilities. 

That is why the FNB Fund decided to continue and further its relationship with the Center for Universal Access and Disability Support (CUADS) at the University of the Free State (UFS). The fund recently donated nearly R2.5 million for 2017, 2018, and 2019 to CUADS in order to assist students with tuition fees, study material, accommodation and supportive devices. 

A total of 11 students will benefit from the R 2 497 440. The UFS previously received R200 000 (2014), R238 000 (2015), and R192 500 (2016) from the FNB Fund.

“The FNB Fund would like to take it
a step further and not only provide
access in terms of funding, but also
provide all the support that
students require to be able
to complete their studies.”

Funders should be aware of challenges

“The FNB Fund would like to take it a step further and not only provide access in terms of funding, but also provide all the necessary support that students require to be able to complete their studies,” says Thandeka Rantsi from the FNB Fund.

The fund also partners with disability units from the University of Stellenbosch, the University of the Western Cape, and the University of Cape Town.

Rantsi says funders should be aware of the challenges students with disabilities face in order to provide the right support as their challenges are more extensive.

More flexible funding than others

Martie Miranda, Head of CUADS, says they are very grateful. “In comparison with other funding, this funding provides more flexibility. Because of the gap between government funding and students’ needs, there are always students who fall out of the criteria for the NSFAS bursary. Then the FNB funding comes in very handy.”

According to her, government funding is never enough. She says the FNB funding enables them to address specific needs such as equipment, accommodation etc. as they have more leeway than prescribed NSFAS amounts.

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