Over the last few months there’s been an extensive amount of activity taking place concerning the ongoing projects and Ubuntu Design Group in general. In this post, I’d like to shed some light on some of the major events that have played out and thus had an effect on our progress as an organization.
Having completed our excursion to the building site in Durban, the team returned to Andrews University to assimilate all the information that had been gathered on the ground, to the actual design. All the processes of listening to build, and creating opportunities for the community were taken into consideration.
On the other hand Wandile And Stephen went to go and represent Ubuntu Design Group at SXSW international design competition where Ubuntu was listed as one of the top six finalists. They were very well received and there was a lot of buzz around the project; however they participated in a less fitting category for the project, as that should’ve been in Social Design instead of the Speculative Category. This was a landmark experience, which afforded them the opportunity to meet and connect with our inspiration organization, MASS Design Group, whom we were able to invite to Andrews, to help and critic our work.
Stephen then went back to Andrews as Wandile went on to speak on behalf of Ubuntu Design Group at the Resolution Project GALA, held at the Harvard Club Building in New York City.
The people at this event were really inspired by the work Ubuntu is doing; to the extent that there was a pressing urge even on their side, to go and give back to their own communities.
After this event, Wandile went back to Andrews to join the team in finalizing the master plan of the Umbumbulu and Mtshali housing component of the project.
This was one of the most exciting moments, because the team was highly passionate and everyone wanted everything gained from the ground not to be compromised; and as a result, there was a lot of debating, walking on tables, tearing of papers and starting over, in order to get it right.
In the end however, the best results have come out. The team has finally agreed on the final design and are now working on developing that design and developing the book which will be inclusive of the the process, designs and research.
On a more downside not, Wandile also faced some financial issues, with some “misunderstood” expectations not fulfilled. Fortunately he was able to get accommodation at Burman dorm, with the understanding that he will have to pay later. The provost gave him a meal card, the Andrews International office also contributed to this and we are all very grateful for this support.
Many thanks and appreciation goes out to the One place Church for paying for Wandile’s ticket back to the ground to keep the project going. One Place has continually supported our ministry and we greatly appreciate that.
The work on the project is still ongoing, and various entities are working towards its success. There is a campaign that will be out soon, that will help raise funds which will go towards funding these projects.
Wandile is currently in Durban, staying at his grandparents house, as he continues to lead the charge for the success of this project.