In her memoirs as First Lady of the USA, Michelle Obama speaks about her work with the youth. She relates an instance when she took a group of girls on an expository visit to Oxford University. The selection of girls was done by teachers who identified those students who “weren’t yet reaching their potential”. This reminded me of a Saturday morning visit to two schools, one in Mitchells Plain and the other in Elsies River where I accompanied Russel Botman. He spoke to those learners because he recognised their untapped potential for higher education. They displayed the potential to achieve at Stellenbosch University and needed the support of hope at Maties to get there.
Last week 5 000 first year Maties were welcomed and this week all the returning students will also register for 2019. The Russel Botman Bursary Fund will again grant bursary opportunities to several students (who might have been rejected by other bursary funds) because we recognise their potential. These students present themselves for learning because they recognise themselves as “unfinished” and in search of knowledge. Paulo Freire explains: “They should incorporate into their way of life the idea of a permanent hope-giving search, which is one of the fruits of our essential (and assumed) unfinishedness. A fruit that begins with knowledge and that with time is transformed into wisdom.”
It is when a Russel Botman Bursary recipient, unsuccessful at other funds, graduates cum laude, that we are grounded in the legacy of Russel Botman. It grants students bursary opportunities to grow from knowledge to wisdom. Please continue to support the potential presented to us. Please donate to the Russel Botman Bursary Fund today!
___________________________________________________________________________________________________________________________________________ Obama, M. (2018): Becoming Michelle Obama, Penguin Random House, New York.  Freire, P. (1998): Pedagogy of Freedom: Ethics, Democracy, and Civic Courage, Rowman & Littlefield, Lanham.