Community Engagement Projects
Animal Health Science
The NWU’s Centre for Animal Health Sciences is providing veterinary services to farmers who keep their livestock on communal grazing land in a 30 km radius around Mafikeng. These farmers are trained and educated on herd health management, whilst students simultaneously gain exposure to real-life situations. Contact Mathew Nyirenda at +27(0)18 389 2722.
In a shared quest to empower the communities of the Vaal Triangle region, the NWU and industry giant ArcelorMittal South Africa joined forces to offer a six-month Sustainability Accelerator Training Programme. Participants in this programme receive interactive and practical learning that enables them to manage their own businesses, acquire and develop sustainable community development projects, attract and retain large corporate funders and drive impact-driven projects. Contact Ederick Stander at +27 (0)16 910 3031.
The community-based research activities of the Africa Unit for Transdisciplinary Health Research (AUTHeR) based on the Potchefstroom Campus are specifically focused on bio-psycho-social health within the context of epidemiology and are aimed at preventing illness, maintaining and promoting health and facilitating quality health systems. Read more
Bekkersdal Community Project
After 75 years of uncontrolled gold mining several research projects had been undertaken at higher education institutions to determine and record the consequences. In late 2012 the Northwest-University received funding from the National Research Foundation to explore the ecohealth and wellbeing status of mining communities. The space of focus was the town of Bekkersdal in western Gauteng and part of the Westonaria municipality situated in the broader Far West Rand Districts Municipal region. The mineral wealth in the area has been depleted and operations are winding down, leaving large-scale environmental degradation, a rising unemployment and serious questions about the health and wellbeing of local residents who regularly also complain about service delivery issues, that worsens their wellbeing status. With hopes to address some of these questions historian, Prof Elize van Eeden from the School of Basic Sciences on the Vaal Triangle Campus, and a team of a 22 academics, representing 11 different disciplines, the project took off in 2013.
The CoachLab@Vaal represents a unique experience where entrepreneurship and innovation are instilled in tomorrow’s business leaders. This nine-month skills and leadership development programme prepares promising postgraduate students within the ITC field for industry. Participants take part in action-learning projects that stimulate innovative thinking and develop leadership potential which, in turn, help students to bridge the gap between the academic and business world. For more information please contact Johann Landsberg or phone +27(0)16 910 3280
- Enterprising Women Programme
The bHive Enterprise Development Centre on the Vaal Triangle Campus launched the Enterprising Women Programme iin 2013 to provide female entrepreneurs with the skills to grow their businesses whilst serving as a platform for launching these businesses as long-term building blocks for economic sustainability. In the course of the programme, participants have the opportunity to explore ideas, develop business models and gain confidence and entrepreneurial know-how. For more information, please contact Johann Landsberg or phone +27(0)16 910 3280
- Young Entrepreneur Business Organisation
Going under the acronym YEBO, this organisation aims to improve entrepreneurship awareness amongst students, thereby influencing young people to view business ownership in a positive light. By promoting entrepreneurship as a preferred career choice, North-West University’s Vaal Triangle Campus believes it is pro-actively shaping the country’s next generation of entrepreneurial giants.
As is the case with its counterpart on the Mafikeng campus, the Law Clinic on the Potchefstroom Campus is also involved in a number of projects which concern training, free legal aid, community outreach, capacity building programmes and advisory services. In addition, this clinic’s Child Justice Unit focuses specifically on children’s rights and the implementation thereof. Contact Lizelle du Pisani at +27 (0)18 297 5341. Read more
Community Law Centre
The Community Law Centre on the Mafikeng Campus provides free legal aid to those who cannot afford it. Final-year students assist in cases involving child maintenance and domestic violence, while paralegal officers assigned to the Law Clinic pay fortnightly visits to outlying areas to ensure rural communities, too, have ready access to the justice system.Contact Simon Rasikhalele at +27 (0)18 389 2030
Early Childhood Education
In an attempt to help prepare pre-schoolers for grade 1, the early childhood education programme offered by the Mafikeng Campus is going out of its way to equip foundation-phase teachers with all the skills and know-how they need to look after children aged six years and younger. Contact Myrtle Erasmus at +27 (0)18 389 2591.
The multidisciplinary team in the FLAGH programme conducted in-depth research to understand the underlying causes of the problems experienced on farms. They then integrated the results from this transdisciplinary research into a product called LIFEPLAN®. Read more
Lifeplan training is a self-empowerment tool for people who would like to be equipped, trained and developed to become skilled, self-sustaining, independent and hardworking individuals. Read more
The Holding Hands project uses craft skills to assist women to start income-generating community projects in rural communities. These skills enable them to earn an income and help to improve their food security status. Read more
Word for word and number by number the NWU is spending Saturdays building a better future for high school children.
Meaning ‘empower yourself’, the Ikateleng project provides supplementary tuition in a variety of school subjects such as mathematics, English, science, accounting and economics to learners from disadvantaged communities. These subjects are complemented by life skills and career guidance. Read more
Improving Results in Accounting Studies
The School of Accounting Sciences on the Vaal Triangle Campus is assisting the Fezile Dabi Education District to improve underperforming schools’ end-of-year results in accounting studies. In addition to hosting workshops for educators, a total of 250 learners within the district who has accounting as a subject are being sponsored to attend Saturday workshops. These learners, who are often underachievers in the subject with averages ranging from 35% to 50%, are selected from the grade 11 and 12 cohort. For more information please contact: Prof. Heleen Janse van Vuuren or phone +27(0)16 910 3402
Kaizer Chiefs Innovation Centre
Not only does the Kaizer Chiefs Innovation Centre afford staff, students and supporters from the local community the opportunity to experience the full Kaizer Chiefs brand, it also houses a research hub where postgraduate students and academic staff can conduct research in disciplines such as sports management, sports science and sports psychology. Contact Ederick Stander at +27 (0)16 910 3031
Kaizer Chiefs Youth Academy
In a drive to support talented young soccer players, the Centre for Continuing Professional Development on the Vaal Triangle Campus has partnered with Kaizer Chiefs’ Youth Academy in Johannesburg. The academy serves as the point of contact between the football club and experts across the university with the aim to develop young footballers in the fields of finance, nutrition, psychological preparation for high-performance sport and physical conditioning. Contact Ederick Stander at +27 (0)16 910 3031
Madibogo Nanofiltration Project
This project provides clean drinking water to roughly 23 000 villagers and their livestock, all of whom are largely dependent upon contaminated groundwater. Nanomembrane technology is used to remove the nitrate, chloride, magnesium and other pollutants found in the water. Contact Lebo Seru at +27 (0)18 389 2545
In partnership with Mosaic South Africa, North-West University is helping people to pick up the pieces of their lives and to, bit by bit, put them together again to create a beautiful mosaic: Housing, education and employment are the ‘tiles’ they use, and dreams and hope the ‘mortar’. With the aid of a model for self-sustainable orphan care developed by Mosaic, we are changing the lives of orphans and their caregivers. Contact Meyer Conradie at +27 (0) 84 840 4074.
The Musikhane Community Project is a music education programme for children from previously disadvantaged communities, specifically learners from Potchefstroom Primary School. It was founded at the NWU School of Music in 1993 and the aim is to make a positive contribution through music towards the quality of life of these children and to establish a foundation for possible further specialized musical training. Learners are brought to the Conservatory on Wednesday afternoons for free practical and theoretical music instruction by music students and lectures.
The Student Rag Community Service, the biggest of its kind in the world, is a student charity organisation of the Potchefstroom Campus. Founded in 1978, more than R1 million is annually collected or generated and paid to various organisations, schools, retirement homes and individuals with special needs.
This is an umbrella project combining 13 sub-projects from different health science disciplines, with a strong emphasis on building inter-sectorial partnerships to holistically improve rural health and well-being. Participating in this project also prepares our students for their professions as they have access to work-integrated learning and community beneficial workshops, training opportunities and interventions. Read more