VULA Annual Report 2015A
t Hilton College, the development of our social equity platform and the growth of our social responsibility programmes are pillars in our strategic planning and in the extension of the learning environment of our School and the education of the next generation.
In the words of Elton John from the “Circle of Life”:
“From the day we arrive on the planet
And blinking step into the sun
There’s more to be seen than can ever be seen
More to do than can ever be done
Some say eat or be eaten
Some say live and let live
But all are agreed as they join the stampede
You should never take more than you give”
I would like to pay tribute to the generous contributors to VULA@Hilton College. The time, energy, wisdom, commitment, loyalty and support of the wide range of people who are involved is awe inspiring – the benefactors, mentors, participants, teachers, learners, staff, supporters, the strategists and the visionaries – a team effort in every way.
VULA@Hilton College makes a significant impact on teachers and learners throughout KwaZulu-Natal, like the proverbial pebble thrown into the pond, with the ripple effect reaching far and wide. The proven track record and measurable impact have been earned through dedication, hard work and resourcefulness. The programme has a structured and meaningful purpose, accurate performance measurement
and evidence-based results; our mission is driven by the concepts of participation, co-operation, inclusion, acceptance and integration and our ethos is based on a culture of responsibility and morality, depending
on profound ethical leadership, and directed by values based behaviour and a higher purpose.
Poverty, inequality and unemployment are major challenges facing our society today, with chronic imbalances in the socio economic structures in South Africa and the welfare of huge numbers of people being severely compromised.
The concept of developing social equity is a conscious and directed response. There is a responsibility to ensure that everyone in this country becomes enabled and has the resources and ability to live life at a reasonable standard of living; and on a practical level, through
directed and conscientious interventions, we can invest in our human capital and there is the potential to affect the lives of others in a positive and lasting way. We need to find common cause in order to keep moving forwards and create social value.
The concept of doing well and doing good provides a workable framework, a virtuous circle where there is huge benefi t in the long run: “The more you have the more responsibility you have to share it with those who don’t.”
Education is a fundamental building block in the construction of a society – it is the enabler that provides the opportunities across the board and allows people to become self-determining, self-confident and self sufficient; in pursuing a strategy that will uplift and empower ordinary people, we play a role in affirming their place and participation in the wider democracy of our country.
VULA@Hilton College is a healthy, resilient and relevant programme, and as we continue to build capacity we are able to uplift individuals and transform communities and bring about sustainable social change.
VULA@Hilton College is a truly inspired educational initiative and I am proud to be associated with the programme and the people who make it possible.
Dale ten Hope
Chair: Community Projects sub-committee,
The Hiltonian Society NPC
The Vula Programme is a division of The Hiltonian Society NPC, the legal entity which owns and operates Hilton College.
Hilton College is a well-known and reputable boys’ independent secondary school which is situated near the village of Hilton in the Midlands of the province of KwaZulu-Natal, South Africa. The school, which opened in 1872, has a proud history of academic, cultural, sporting and outreach excellence.
The Vula Programme at Hilton College (“vula” means “open” in isiZulu) was started in 2001 as the Society’s educational service provider to the under-resourced schools and disadvantaged communities in the region.
Since then it has established itself as the pre-eminent organisation of its type in the region, having gained the reputation of providing relevant, meaningful and cost effective educational interventions and development opportunities for its beneficiaries.
The Vula Programme uses up-to-date technologies, innovative teaching methods and experienced facilitators to concentrate on the upgrading of the teaching and learning of high school Mathematics
and Physical Science. The programme is underpinned by a belief that
access to, and training in, Information Communication Technologies are integral components of the skills transfer process when providing assistance to its beneficiary communities.
The impact of the Vula Programme is well documented in seven independent external evaluations conducted between 2008 and 2015. These evaluations all reported that the activities of the programme impact positively on its beneficiaries and are worthy of support. The
most recent of these, conducted by Professor Margie Maher, looked at the impact of the Vula Mathematics Academy.
In 2015 the Programme worked with teachers and pupils from more than one hundred high schools. These schools are in the greater Midlands area which extends from Pietermaritzburg in the south to Bergville in the north. More than half of the schools are in impoverished rural areas