A University of Johannesburg (UJ) student Thembi Ntsanwisi exemplifies a passion for making a difference. Through his community work he is doing his part for the Nelson Mandela Foundation’s First Pillar – Education and Literacy.
In 2014 he spent a total of 376 hours giving back to the community in various projects, including the UJ Tutoring Project. This life changing project saw learners in several Soweto schools receiving tutoring in a variety of subjects from UJ Community Engagement volunteer students.
The grade 10 – 12 learners from seven schools received tutoring in mathematics; physical sciences; accounting; English; life sciences; and other high school subjects. In 2015 the project expanded to three tutoring centres in Soweto, Diepsloot and Orlando. The Department of Education has already showed interest in the project and is working with the Community Engagement students to see how it can expand.
In 2014, Ntsanwisi, a final year Biotechnology student was presented with the Best Student Volunteer Champion of 2014 award at the Community Engagement Student Structure Recognition Awards (CERA) for his role in educating youth.
Says Ntsanwisi: “I have always had a passion to give back to the community. When I found out about Community Engagement at UJ I was glad to find a place where I could be of help. In 2014, between classes I had more time which allowed me to help out more, I guess that’s how I became the Volunteer of the year.”