“Start by doing what’s necessary, then do what’s possible, and suddenly you are doing the impossible” ~ St Francis of Assis
This is one of my favourite quotes, and has become especially meaningful to me and my team over the past 18 months. Collectively we’ve faced something that we never thought would or could happen in our lifetime. A global pandemic. This seemingly insurmountable challenge; unpredictable and relentless. It took us all by surprise, and with each new variant or spike in numbers, we feel surprised, or even blindsided all over again.
At Good Work Foundation, just like every other organisation, we’ve pivoted, adapted, paused, evolved… all of the things! Day by day, we have done all of the necessary. And now, 18 months in, we seem to have done the impossible. With the help of a network of generous givers and some serious hard work, we are 18 months into this global pandemic, and still delivering our wonder-filled learning to over 10,000 young rural South Africans on the borders of the Sabi Sand Wildtuin, the Great Kruger National Park, and the village of Philippolis in the Free State.
These 10,000 rural youth are learning how to code, build robots, and become conservationists protecting our precious rhino and other wild species and spaces. These young rural South Africans are gaining the confidence to express themselves in English, figuring out who they are as global citizens, and learning that they too have a voice in this world. They’re pulling apart computers, and learning to put them back together again, and learning about cyber security. They’ve spent time in hotels learning the ropes of hospitality from the best of the best, so that they’re poised to gain meaningful employment as the tourism industry emerges. They’re moving through Good Work Foundation to become vibrant and vital employable youth. We’ve seen them show up with unbridled enthusiasm and joy despite the odds.
We will continue to do the necessary and see the impossible become possible, just as our young people do every day. And we know that we can do it because we are so incredibly supported. Our friends at Londolozi dedicated the whole of November to Good Work Foundation, turning Giving Tuesday, into “Giving November”. I’d like to change that to be “Achieving the Impossible November”! Through this support, Londolozi and guests have raised over $14,000 that will go towards our Open Learning Academy for 2022. It means that over 200 children will have access to immersions in Coding & Robotics, Conservation, Citizenship, and Creative Arts. They’ll have space and time to come to our campuses in the afternoons to choose what they want to learn, and how they learn it. They’ll have the full support of dedicated, passionate and skilled Facilitators.
We are grateful for this support and thank you for continuing to help us Reimagine Education in South Africa. Our donations page is still active for those we would still like to contribute. As we navigate through the uncertainty, we will continue to do the necessary, and if these past 18 months have shown us anything, it’s that nothing is impossible.
As Nelson Mandela said “It always seems impossible until it’s done.”