By Nwabisa Nkani
The Khanya Maths and Science Club have been running for 22 years, purposefully aiming at assisting local learners of Makhanda who have a passion for Maths and Science to be inspired and propel their futures forward. The club takes place every Saturday morning at 9am at the Great Hall at Rhodes University. The champions behind making sure the club runs consistently and smoothly each year, is the club coordinator Mrs. Joyce Sewry, assisted by the staff and student volunteers of the Chemistry and Science departments at Rhodes University. However, the club does also have student volunteers from other departments.
On 17 September 2022, the club held its last session for the year and grade 8 and 9 school learners from the schools Nombulelo, Ntsika, and Khutliso Daniels attended in their school uniforms. The learners started their morning with a talk about viruses, learning about what viruses are, understanding how they work, and the good and the bad about viruses. The talk was delivered by Dr. Jukes and Prof. Knox along with their post-grad, honors, and undergrad students, at the Bioscience building lecture.
The school learners enjoyed learning about viruses, and some were inspired to work with them. Comments from the learners were:
"I enjoyed learning about facts of Coronaviruses and other new viruses I did not know about. I even took notes."
“I was not aware that there were good and bad viruses so I will share that information with my friends and family back at home.”
Then after the talk, the school learners went back to the Great Hall and separated into their small groups to do some Maths with their tutors. Scanning through the room the learners we actively engaging with their tutors. It was so inspiring experiencing the vital role the student volunteers play in the educational journey of each learner in the club. As recognition and acknowledgment of the tutor's volunteer, Mrs. Sewry gave a wonderful speech and handed certificates to the student volunteers.
"Every Saturday morning the volunteers come of their free will to help the learners with Maths and Science because they believe in helping others and through that they can move South Africa and Makhanda society forward.” said Mrs. Sewry.
The Khanya Maths and Science Club has been an immensely committed partner with Rhodes community engagement for years. On behalf of the Chemistry Society Representatives Binita Manilal and Pertunia Macingane gifted full stationery for the grade 8s and 9s, and they had three special stationaries for the top three grade 9 in Maths.
Mrs Sewry always plays an intrinsic role in vouching and improving learners and student education, as part of her closing words she encouraged the learners to go to the libraries, take out books and read even on holidays.
“It doesn’t matter what you read; you can read anything for 30 minutes to an hour. Then talk to your friends about what you have read.”
Mrs Sewry furthermore, heartened the learners by saying they should always make use of the opportunities given to them, hoping to see the grade 8s of this year coming back to the club next year. In addition, the grade 9s moving to other cooperative and impactful organizations in making their future brighter such as Ikamva, Inkululeko, etc.
Source: Rhodes University Community Engagement