FunDza is immensely proud to have won Gold in the Impumelelo Social Innovations Awards, a leading awards programme in South Africa, that rewards innovators who find creative solutions to public problems. Impumelelo is dedicated to ensuring that award winners are impactful, sustainable and deserving.
Towards the beginning of the year we sent in our application and were thrilled when we heard that we’d been selected for an initial evaluation of our project. Lynne Matthews, the Impumelelo evaluator, visited our offices to meet the team. She asked ask in-depth questions to find out exactly what FunDza did, and to explore the type of impact it was having on young people.
We were delighted to hear that we had made the initial cut. This meant that we had to participate in the final adjudications – an eight minute pitch about FunDza – at Workshop 17 at the Waterfront. The pitch was to a panel of seven judges as well as to other potential award winners. It was fascinating to hear about the many other projects that were being considered for the awards. We loved the range of social innovations profiled – from youth orchestras, to medical apps, to internet cafes in Khayelitsha and beyond.
We were very excited to receive an invite to the gala event awards ceremony, and that we could invite many of our supporters and friends to come too. We were delighted that so many accepted the invite, particularly many of our young mentee writers who are an integral part of our work.
On Saturday 4 November, FunDza staff members were all dressed up with somewhere to go – the Artscape Theatre for the glittering awards event. It was heart-warming and celebratory, with the Grabouw Primary School choir singing, the Rural Arts Network playing marimbas and the awe-inspiring Indoni Dance team performing an astonishing routine to wrap up the evening.
What a delight to hear that FunDza had won Gold for its ‘Growing communities of readers and writers’ programme! When our name was announced, there were cheers of delight, and the FunDza team all rushed up to the stage to receive this fantastic accolade.
A very big thank you goes to Impumelelo Social Innovations Centre for their organisation of the rigorous evaluation and judging process. Many individuals are involved in the initial evaluations and the subsequent judging of the finalists in order to ensure that the winners meet their criteria for excellence. Special thanks goes to Rhoda Kadalie and her small but highly effective team for their organisation throughout. Thanks too to the numerous sponsors of Impumelelo, the various awards and the event.
Big congratulations go to the other award winners and certificate holders of the Impumelelo Social Innovations Awards. It is always inspiring to learn about the important work that many organisations are doing in South Africa. So, we celebrate the following who received accolades and appreciation for their initiatives: Zip Zap Circus School, Buskaid, Khaya Lam, Waves for Change, SAPRI, WC Department of Health, Umuzi Academy, TRAC South Africa, Community Keepers, Woza Moya, West Coast Youth Orchestra, Indoni Academy Training Programme, Thanda, Bright Kid Foundation, Ray Mhlaba Skills Training Centre, Autism Western Cape, Vula Mobile, STEPS Clubfoot Care, Tshepang Educare, Silulo Ulutho Technologies, Solar Turtle, Department of Community Safety Court Watching Brief, TEARS Foundation, and The Wot-If? Trust.