A registered Section 18 A Non-Profit Organisation, Funda Afrika is dedicated to the management and implementation of school development and transformation programmes. Established in April 2008 by the programme managers of the former Education Quality Improvement Partnerships (EQUIP) programme run by the National Business Initiative (NBI) since 1997, developed its own School Transformation and Empowerment Partnerships (STEP) programme based on reviews of, and the lessons learnt from EQUIP.
In addition to the above, we have developed and consistently strengthened our partnership with the Brainwave organisation, offering subject choice and career guidance to learners in Grades 9, and further study and career guidance to learners in Grades 11 and/or 12.
Since its inception, STEP has been implemented in well over 100 schools across five provinces, in partnerships with our funders and the relevant provincial education department officials.
At Funda Afrika, we constantly re-evaluate our project designs and the service providers we employ. We conduct feasibility and baseline studies as well as evaluations both for the projects we manage and as stand-alone services for projects contemplated or managed by others.
Among our partners, Funda Afrika is well known for our regular, comprehensive, accessible and honest reporting.
One of Funda Afrika’s central points of departure is the commitment to partnerships with provincial education departments. The organisation will only work in public schools once agreement on envisaged projects has been reached with the legal custodians of public education in the relevant provinces.Such partnerships are given content through consultative bodies such as stakeholder forums, steering committees, provincial education development trusts or boards which oversee the implementation of STEP projects. These structures include provincial officials, funders, project schools’ representatives, service providers and representatives from Funda Afrika itself.
Funda Afrika ensures that all its partners are kept abreast of progress and challenges in its work, through comprehensive monthly and/or quarterly reporting, regular meetings of the relevant forums and joint site visits to project schools.
In all the projects which Funda Afrika manages, the improvement of learner performance features as the paramount outcome of our and our service providers’ work. In this, we include preparation of able learners for the challenges – and the intellectual excitement – of tertiary study, and we offer career guidance through associations with established experts.
We have also embarked on coordination and mutual learning processes of organisations involved in developing able and committed young school leavers or graduates into effective, committed and reflective practitioners in the teaching profession, by way of apprentice/internships. This involves academic support for part-time degree studies as well as intensive exposure to, and practice in sound and intellectually stimulating teaching practices.
We see our role as facilitating the joint efforts of education departments, funders, service providers and schools into collective interventions appropriate to the actual needs and conditions that prevail in the various areas of South Africa in which we are privileged to work.
We do so with empathy and understanding, but manage our projects with an uncompromising commitment to quality. It is our conviction that the children of South Africa deserve nothing less than the best that we and our partners can give them.