from an alumnus requesting funding for a tutoring program in South
June 24, 2002
Dear fellow Tigers,
I am in my second year teaching math at the University of Cape Town (UCT)
as part of the Princeton in Africa Cape Town program. Last year I started
taking some of the better students from my undergraduate class to tutor
at a high school in Langa township. Since then I have been seeking funding
to enhance and expand the project but have found it difficult in a country
with so many problems and so few resources.
The Ukufundisa Isizwe Educational Empowerment Program is a math-tutoring
project in its second year of operation. As high schools in South African
townships suffer from particularly low matriculation pass rates, the need
for math tutors is evident. There are salient obstacles that impede effective
academic tutoring for black South Africans. The Ukufundisa Isizwe Educational
Empowerment Programme (U.I.) effectively combats these obstacles in three
U.I. places first-year varsity students who speak indigenous African
languages in the slot of tutor, working in tandem with high school mathematics
teachers. These varsity students continue on with the tutorial program
until they graduate, thereby providing the consistency and role models
that are needed and deserved by the high school students in Langa township.
U.I. gives its learners a more comprehensive view of the world by
incorporating field trip expeditions to UCT, sponsoring corporations,
government forums, cultural events, or other locations deemed to have
educational merit by staff.
U.I. buttresses its math tutorials with career counselling workshops
hosted by the Zithembe Community Center in Langa (a partner organisation).
As of July 2002, Ukufundisa Isizwe needs $7,000 to meet its financial
requirements for the next two years. I am hoping this letter will reach
those Princetonians eager to make a contribution towards Africas