Established in 1992, Education Africa strives to reach and uplift the poorest of the poor. We aim to assist disadvantaged South Africans in their quest to obtain a quality, relevant education in order to ensure that they are in a position to become global citizens and a competitive, productive element in the local job market.
Education Africa’s head office is based in Johannesburg, South Africa. The team is headed by James Urdang, who is both the Chief Executive Officer and founder of Education Africa. Our Financial Director is Wendy Saner. Known for their ability to “make things happen” and for their tireless commitment to the task at hand, they are an inspiration to those who work with them and know them.
Education Africa has registered self-sustainable offices in the USA, the UK, Austria and in Germany. Their purpose is to assist Education Africa South Africa in achieving its mission.
Education Africa delivers economy-focused education while assisting those most in need with opportunities to improve their access to relevant education, thus enabling them to participate fully in the global economy. With the continued help and support of our dedicated volunteers and sponsors, we can continue to fulfil our mission statement: to deliver relevant, quality education to the poorest of the poor.
This website is a testament as to how far we have come. Through our belief in strong partnerships and the invaluable support of our immense volunteer base, we are proud and grateful to have instigated massive and enriching changes in the lives of so many people.
Our Holistic Approach
Over the years, Education Africa has aligned itself with “striving to assist in re-establishing a culture of learning and teaching”, and more recently our guiding principles have been “Making real change Happen” by implementing “Poverty alleviation through Education”. The organization’s focus though remains the same – to make a meaningful contribution to the educational growth and development of previously disadvantaged communities. Education Africa’s motto is: Educate ∙ Equip ∙ Empower.
The organization’s focus is to break the cycle of poverty through educational interventions and providing educational opportunities for various age groups among South Africa’s disadvantaged citizens.
Education Africa is a social-entrepreneur-driven project and was conceptualised in 1989 by James Urdang, the current Chief Executive Officer and Founder of Education Africa. Over the years, James was fortunate to have been mentored by the late Walter Sisulu and the late Dr Aggrey Klaaste, former Editor-in-Chief of The Sowetan who became the organisation’s first chairman in 1992, when Education Africa was officially registered. Both Walter Sisulu and Dr Klaaste remained strong and active supporters of Education Africa and our projects until their passing, and under their guidance, we were able to establish valuable contacts in government departments as well as the support of government leaders.
Education Africa is a Non-Profit Organization which aims to assist disadvantaged South Africans in their quest to obtain a quality, relevant education in order to ensure that they are in a position to become global citizens and a competitive, productive element in the local job market. Education Africa aims for an educated nation, which in turn will lead to a progressive nation that is in a position to sustain economic growth.
It is now more than 25 years since South Africa has become a democracy, and sadly there is still an enormous amount of work to be done in terms of building the country’s education system. The National Departments of Basic Education and Higher Education have their work cut out for themselves, and there remains a very real need for organisations like Education Africa to contribute to change. There are too many disadvantaged communities (both in South Africa and beyond) who are still denied access to quality education. At Education Africa, we are committed to help facilitate this change and make a meaningful contribution.
Our Future Plans
Back in 2013, Deloitte hosted and facilitated an Education Africa Strategic Development Workshop which was attended by the Education Africa Executive, Directors, Trustees and several project stakeholders, international stakeholders, Education Africa donors and supporters. The Education Africa Board of Trustees approved the strategies and vision that came out of this workshop, and we continue to work towards meeting our set goals and objectives of “Making real change Happen” by providing “Poverty alleviation through Education”, while applying them to new trends and developments in our sphere of work.
Two of our key strategies are:
To increase the capacity and skills levels of the existing Education Africa structures in order to fill certain gaps and create the capacity to meet the needs of the expanding organisation.
To develop a Social Franchising model to enable Education Africa to effectively expand its reach into Africa. Education Africa has a number of projects which are suited for this kind of development, and we have been guided by Deloitte and its stakeholders to structure and formulate an effective model.
Our immediate focus is to continue our path of a high quality standard of project delivery accompanied by good governance in all our projects. Additionally, we are in the process of scaling two of our key projects – ECD and Marimba Hubs – and extend their reach to an ever-increasing number of beneficiaries, while also taking Masibambane College to new levels of excellence.
Our Governance Structures
We have an independent Board of Trustees:
Kananelo Makhetha, CEO, Club Travel Corporate (part of the Thebe Group of Companies)
Abdullah Verachia, GIBS (Gordon Institute of Business Science) faculty member, Strategist, Director of Companies
Sanjay Kassen, Director at ENSafrica
Mmaphuti Lephondo, Manager, Development and Transformation in the public sector
Gary Poultney, Business Head & Portfolio Manager at Sasfin Wealth
Veronica Shezi, business owner and entrepreneur
Russell Zama, Director of Russell Zama Construction and Transport Company
Justice Dikgang Moseneke
Dr Sam Motsuenyane
Dr Mamphele Ramphele
Dr Oskar Dhlomo
Dr Aggrey Klaaste
Our Management team comprises:
James Urdang (Chief Executive Officer & Founder)
Wendy Saner (Financial Director)
Abdullah Veracchia (Independent Non-executive Director)
Not for Profit Company (NPC) – Registration Number 1992/001394/08
Non-Profit Organisation (NPO) – Registration Number 004-193NPO
Public Benefit Organisation (PBO) – Registration Number 93000573T
Level 1 B-BBEE Participant
Professional Service Providers We have capable professional service providers:
Bankers: First National Bank
Investment Funds: Investec and Sasfin
Staff remuneration benchmarking: Deloitte
Strategic review and oversight: Deloitte
Governance: Independent Board of Trustees
Legal Advisor: ENSafrica
Transparency Through Financial Project Reporting
Education Africa’s Audited Financial Statements are available and open to all.
Project financial reporting is carried out as per individual agreements with our donors.
Donors may appoint an independent auditor (at their cost) to audit the funding which they have donated.
Allocation audits on donor funding may also be requested at donor’s cost.
Broad-Based Black Economic Empowerment
Education Africa: Your B-BBEE Partner In Education
If you are looking for the ideal partner and shareholder with respect to your Broad-Based Black Economic Empowerment Scorecard, look no further. Education Africa, following its B-BBEE verification dated 4 December 2019, has retained its position as a Level 1* B-BBEE contributor with procurement recognition of 135%. This effectively means that all Education Africa clients/partners can claim R1,35 BEE spent for every R1,00 spent with Education Africa on their scorecard. Education Africa is a NPC (Non Profit Company) and by including us in a B-BBEE ownership transaction, companies receive additional bonus points for our black new entrance compliance.
*In terms of the B-BBEE Act No 53 as Amended by Act no 46 of 2013, to qualify as a Level 1 contributor in the B-BBEE Exempted Micro Enterprise category, an entity needs to have at least 75% black beneficiaries. Education Africa comfortably meets this minimum requirement; in fact, 98% of our beneficiaries are black as defined by the Department of Trade and Industry.
What are the benefits of having Education Africa as a B-BBEE partner?
Education Africa has transparent governance structures
Education Africa has been in existence since 1992
Education Africa has participated in an equity transaction
Education Africa’s beneficiaries are broad-based
Education Africa provides a potential to score B-BBE points for a broad-based scheme which forms part of the Ownership score for the participating company
What is B-BBEE?
Since 1994, Broad-Based Black Economic Empowerment (B-BBEE) has been adopted as an initiative of the South African Government aimed at promoting economic transformation in order to enable meaningful participation of black people in the economy. The BEE Act of 2003 outlined the required targeted areas of development within the South African economy. These key development areas have measurable outcomes in ensuring a path to greater broad-based and effective economic participation, the right to equality, increased employment, more equitable income distribution, economic unity of the nation, equal opportunity and access to services and protection of the common market place.
The Act has been amended, and The Broad-Based Black Economic Empowerment Amendment Act, 2013 (Act No. 46 of 2013) was proclaimed on 24 October 2014, symbolising a new beginning in the re-orientation of the transformation policy to focus more on productive B-BBEE and the growth of black entrepreneurs through Enterprise and Supplier Development elements.