Empowering South Africa through Education
Umthente (or ‘sword grass’) is a 10-day holiday programme. It aims to teach high school pupils (Grade 10-12) how to become entrepreneurially minded and to understand the concept of earning and saving before they leave school.
How it works
A basic entrepreneurial course will be offered during the school holidays and will be facilitated by UCT Finance and Accounting students (who will be paid). During the 10-day programme, we will cover topics from entrepreneurship to saving to budgeting to book-keeping to learning critical financial jargon, and more. The participants will be tasked with a hypothetical entrepreneurial project to ultimately see who can earn and save the most. Pupils participating in the programme will be expected to open a savings account, to ensure that the culture of saving starts from a young age and continues successfully into adulthood.
We plan on recruiting 10 student facilitators to start with, and approximately 100 students from different schools. We’ll host the course at one of the schools. To make the holiday programme affordable, we are asking the crowd to fund one participant or more to become more financially savvy; and ultimately more financially independent. The longer term objective is to digitise the course and create an app, to reach a larger audience.
Umthente is a Zulu word for river grass / sword grass. The name is taken from a popular Zulu proverb, “umthente uhlaba usamila”, which when directly translated to English means “the sword grass has spikey ends even at a young age. This special characteristic of the plant is used to allude to the fact that a prodigy can be seen at young age and that he/she will be some person of renown. This is in line with our vision. Studies have shown that children who are from families with at least one entrepreneur proceed to be entrepreneurs, and achieve greater success than the previous generation. So we are passionate about giving a golden opportunity to the segment of South African society that never had these opportunities, and in the process help transform South Africa both socially and economically.
Milestone 1 – R15 000
The Tipping Point – We reach this Milestone, our project is A-go!
● This will cover the cost of one holiday programme for 100 high school pupils at R100 per participant for the full 10 days and will include the tutoring fees for 10 x university student facilitators (R500 each per day, including transport to the venue/school).
Milestone 2 – R30 000
● We are planning to increase the holiday programme to 20 student facilitators and 200+ students. This second holiday programme will potentially be at a different school.
Milestone 3 – R50 000
The Ultimate Goal
● Creating a virtual entrepreneurial programme to reach as many high school students as possible. For this, we want to develop an interactive application (App). This will also include paying university student facilitators who will be interacting with the high school students from a distance. The funds will also help us generate awareness by going into schools and marketing the holiday entrepreneurial programme and the accompanying App.