Hopefully, you all enjoyed hearing about the amazing trip that Phumlani was able to take to the U.S. this past summer. Everyone at From the Roots was so thankful for the many people and organizations that made the trip the life-changing experience it was. Every dollar donated, event attended, and welcome extended meant so much to us as an organization, and to Phumlani as a fellow. But this trip was not the end of the hard work that needs to be done, rather a continuation of a long struggle. Now that Phumlani is back in South Africa, we asked him to tell us what challenges remain as he continues to work to grow SAYO. Here's what he shared with us:
· Since 2009 till now I have remained unemployed, only surviving on From the Roots' fellowship stipend.
· I’m still surviving in my poor Chicago calling a shack a home.
· At SAYO we have made no progress as far as getting financial resources to pay coaches and staff members and build sport facilities for schools. I’m a founder, executive director and a basketball coach at the very same time.
· We still need to own a base camp, SAYO revolutionary home, where offices and H.I.L.L. Program will be based (Editor's note: H.I.L.L.- Home Institution and Learning Lab-is an alternative and revolutionary education strategy for people who have not been successful through the current South African education system)
· Relevant government bodies are getting more corrupt and we can not rely on them for support.
· The youth is losing hope and not considering voluntary work as the way out of poverty.
From the Roots is committed to working with fellows like Phumlani and Sihle to help them address the systemic challenges that they face on a daily basis so that they can focus on the important work of changing their communities from the inside out. But we cannot do it alone. Thank you to everyone who has supported the work of Sihle, Phumlani, and From the Roots so far. We sincerely hope that you continue to stay engaged and we would love to talk with you more about ways that you can get involved. Our highest need is financial, so any and all donations are always appreciated, but there are so many other talents, skills, and kindnesses you all have that we know would be so beneficial. To donate, please visit: DONATE NOW . For more information about how to get involved, check us out on our FOR YOU page.
We have updates from both Phumlani and Shile coming soon, so be sure to keep checking back to the blog!