News we like to share with you

Fundraising Dinner

September 14, 2017

CUF’s 2017 Fundraising Dinner treated 67 people to a wonderful evening of excellent food and great entertainment provided by  Nick and Hazel at the piano (they were fantastic) and Peter Thomas with his amazing magical tricks.
Everyone really enjoyed the evening. A big thank you to all who came and very generously supported the event and the raffle. And thanks to all the very generous donors of raffle prizes.We raised a very creditable total of £1595.00.

Dumisa Seteni - Professional medical sign language interpreter

Januari 24, 2016
I am Dumisa Seteni from Cape Town. I want to say thank you so much for your support throughout the years. It had made a huge impact on my professional life. Being raised by Deaf parents I had to learn Sign language from a very young age. I needed to communicate and understand them. I always had dreams to take it further. To do it professionally, but I did not know where to start. Thank you to University of Cape Town for the opportunity they gave me. Thank you for your endless support you kept me moving. Today I am Working for a big organisation, that represent Deaf people Nationwide. I am growing and getting better each day. Today my parents are proud of me. I am a proud father and a provider to my daughter. Thank you so much. Kind Regards Dumisa Seteni

Sheila Lerato Thamahane - Professional medical sign language interpreter

Januari 24, 2016
Please allow me to express my sincere gratitude to you. I am very, very thankful of your contribution towards my professional development because today I can proudly tell people that I am a professional South African Sign Language Interpreter in health care only because of you generous support.
I am the second trainee to graduate and I have been working solo in the field since 2014. As for me to attain my diploma I was required to do some voluntary work in the Deaf community and also to shadow the professional interpreters in health care. Your funds have played a major role in all that by transporting me and helping me with refreshments.
From the bottom of my heart I thank you for your support because without it I would not be where I am today. Your support has not just helped me to attain my diploma but also helped many Deaf people around Cape Town to access health care in their own language and they all appear to love and enjoy the service we render. Once again thank you. Warmly Sheila Lerato Thamahane


Support for the School for the Deaf in Witteboom

December 5, 2015
CUF’s support for the School for the Deaf in Witteboom, Cape Town, kicks off with the delivery of ten Google Chrome Tablets for the pilot phase of the project.

Lymington Fundraiser cleared £3000.00

September 26, 2014
Thank you to all the wonderful people that supported our fundraising dinner at Stanwell House Hotel on Friday 26th September 2014.
It was a great evening with fun and magic by Peter the Magician, and Ros with her very entertaining songs and poems. Wonderful raffle prizes were donated by the local community. Auction prizes included a free stay of 5 nights for up to 6 people at the Carlton Meres Resort.
Thank you also for all the donations made by people that could not attend the evening. The money will all be invested and the income distributed to the causes that CUF supports. Once again many thanks without your help we could not help those that need our support so badly.

University of Cape Town Bursaries

November 24, 2012
CUF will continue to support our two students, Dumisa Senteni and Lizeka Madlolo, with full bursaries for the second year of their sign language course. They have successfully completed their first year.

UCT Trainee sign (SASL) language interpreter project

April 18, 2012
Many thanks again to CUF for their very generous sponsorship – and meeting us all in January. It was a good meeting. CUF’s interest is inspiring for all of us, especially the trainees. Here we would like to update you all on the sponsorship – that is Dumisa Senteni’s training for two years and Lizeka Madlolo’s monthly stipend.

In the photograph Dumisa is checking his diary. Dumisa is doing well. His confidence continues to grow and his enthusiasm is exciting to share. His schedule is busy. He attends SLED for sign (SASL) language classes weekly. He also attends tutorials at SLED once a fortnight. This he does with the three other trainees, Lizeka Madlolo, Sheila Thamahane and Nombulelo Cekwana. The tutorials are designed with Continuing Professional Development (CPD) in mind. They support and extend the language and interpreter skills that the trainees learn in their first year (even though Dumisa is still in his first year, we feel he should enjoy all possible learning opportunities). We hope to plant the seed of CPD so that trainees will continue to work to grow professionally throughout their careers. We also have a new initiative commencing this week Friday 20 April. Then the trainees will meet with UCT’s new (and first ever) full-time professional SASL interpreter, Lesego Modutle. The plan is for Lesego and the trainees to meet once a month. It should be an opportunity to keep in touch as well as share information and support. The Disability Unit where Lesego is based are very supportive.

Lizeka Madlolo is second from the end at the table. Lezeka was one of the first trainees and joined us in January 2010. Last year she left to have a baby. She applied to come back. Before she came back to us she had herself assessed at SLED (at her own expense) to make sure her SASL skills were up to date. Now she is back with us and also doing well.
In the photograph Lizeka is attending a research project meeting. The SASL trainees and others will also be conducting fieldwork at two health facilities in Cape Town over the next two months. Lizeka will be leading the team at Guguletu Community Health Centre. The team includes Deaf and hearing researchers. Thumie (next to Dumisa) and Roy (two up from Lizeka and with his arms folded) are our Deaf colleagues.

THE RESEARCH TEAM – the hand sign means ‘ I love you’ in sign language.
This photograph depicts the research team as a whole and finally we have a photograph of Nombulelo Cekwana. Nombulelo seen here with Maxean Pieterse and Susan Lombard (the lecturer and co-ordinator of the Interpreter Diploma at University of the Free State) is the first ‘graduate’ of the UCT medical SASL interpreter course. She commenced her solo career in March this year – and has been busy ever since. We are very proud of Nombulelo.

Maxean Pieterse, Susan Lombard and Nombulelo Cekwana, the first of UCT’s medical SASL interpreters to graduate.

CUF Receives another Donation from the Netherlands for Umnqophiso

August 23, 2011
The 2011 First Communion Class at the St. Victor Catholic Church in Noordwijkerhout, Netherlands, have raised another amazing EU610.13 which they have asked CUF to pass on to Umnqophiso Pre-Primary School. This will enable the school to install another  “quiet corner”, the last of the six which they needed to create a quiet space in each classroom.
Many thanks for this wonderful donation, and thanks once again Jolanda for making it happen. 

CBF Jumps for SSAFA and CUF

June 26, 2011
Over Armed Forces Day weekend, on the 26th June 2011, Maria Stuttaford, partner of CBF AVM Graham Stacey, led a team consisting of Angie Allen, Sgt Mark Blackham, Sarah Burns and Flt Lt Jackie Wren on a charity tandem parachute jump at the Dhekelia Parachute Club, Cyprus. Flt Sgt Dene Bishop and Bianca Bates will jump in the coming weeks. The eight jumpers have collectively raised over £3,500 for the Soldiers, Sailors, Airmen and Families Association (SSAFA Forces Help), the Children of the Universe Foundation (CUF), the Big Salute and NSPCC.Raised £1,127.21 (R12,553.61) for CUF.

Rainbow Kids Provide Extra Lessons to Sir Lowry’s Pass Primary School

May 30, 2011
Having successfully brought eleven children back into main stream education last year with assistance from CUF, Rainbow Kids, working with the school staff, have started providing extra lessons in numeracy and literacy to children who would otherwise not obtain passing grades. Ten children at a time are taken from a class and given special lessons. This also benefits the other children by reducing class numbers (up to 45 children in some classes) to more manageable levels while the special lessons are in progress. CUF has provided funding for the extra books and materials needed for the extra lessons.


Macassar High School Reports Benefits of the Life Skills Course funded by CUF

February 17, 2011
Our school has been so privileged to be able to annually attend the skills training camp as organized by the staff of the Mike Woods Environmental Center. This free camp is a highlight for youngsters who otherwise would not have the financial means to attend a skills training course of this nature.
The skills and values attained on the weekend away from home are of an invaluable nature to these youngsters. One must remember that most of these youngsters are under immense peer pressure to be part of negative activities such as alcohol and drug abuse as well as other inappropriate and illegal activities. The learners that we select for the camp ranges from the most hardworking to the most ill disciplined. The atmosphere of hard work, clean fun activities, and teamwork created at the camp lend to these youngsters the opportunity to work and play together and have a positive influence on one another.
The facilitators are always so knowledgeable, supportive and friendly. The learners get the opportunity to tap into what they have to offer which are always well organized and easy to understand. Most of our learners lack in self esteem and this is addressed in the sessions that they participate in. They are taught how to strengthen their weak points and enhance their abilities and talents.
The outcome of the camp is highly positive as most of the attendants apply the skills attained in their school and home life. I have had positive feedback from teachers commenting on behavioural and attitude changes in their children. Also most of the youngsters assert themselves at school by taking on leadership roles in school clubs and organizations such as the School Representative Council. They also enroll in activities such as The President’s Award programme for youth development, take part in sport and cultural activities, do community service and lead a more balanced lifestyle.
The environmental aspects touched on by the facilitators are relevant and fascinating to the learners. Through hiking activities they get to experience nature. This instills in them a sense of appreciation for the small wonders in life. These learners then often join the school’s Eco Club.
The skills camp have entrusted in the learners a sense of hard work and diligence which are evident in the fact that many of the participants went on to a tertiary level of education and are studying to become lawyers, nature conservationists, economists and computer technicians, to name but a few.
The camps also served as a catalyst in the fact that our school has also investigated other avenues available for taking learners on excursions such as hikes and adventure camps which are affordable for our learners.
Alicia Keet

CUF Receives Donation from Netherlands for Umnqophiso

May 2010
They have done it again. This time the 2010 First Communion class at the St. Victor Catholic Church in Noordwijkerhout, Netherlands have raised an amazing EU 898.92 which they have asked CUF to pass onto Umnqophiso Pre-Primary School for “Quiet corners” in the new classrooms. Many thanks for this wonderful donation, and thank you Jolanda for making this happen again.

CUF Receives Donation from British Headquarters in Tampa, USA

December 31, 2009
Many thanks to all those who contributed to the Loose Change collection held for CUF in Tampa.
This great idea raised £123-00, which will be invested in CUF’s capital fund. The resulting income will contribute towards ongoing funding for CUF’s projects, making a difference for many years to come.

CUF Supports the Rainbow Kids

May 20, 2009
CUF has decided to support the Rainbow Kids, an organisation which has provided a special needs classroom at Sir Lowry’s Pass Primary School to take in children who have missed enrolment in the education system. They are unable to attend any school until they have been brought up to the standard for their age. Without Rainbow Kids there is no way for such children to get an education – ever. The first 8 children have now started, with ages ranging from 6-13 years old.
CUF has provided funding for audio/visual classroom equipment, and for a school uniform track suit and books for each learner enrolled in this new class.

CUF Funds Sewing Class in Sir Lowry’s Pass Village

March 24, 2009
The Sir Lowry’s Pass Day Care Centre provides assistance to those in need of help in Sir Lowry’s Pass Village. A sewing class has recently been started in order to provide skills training, using donated equipment and funding.
CUF will support the sewing class by providing an additional sewing machine and overlocker , funding for a teacher for two classes per week until the end of 2009, and a prize of a sewing machine to be presented to the best student at the end of the year.

Two New Classrooms for Umnqophiso Pre-Primary School

October 31, 2008
Work has been successfully completed on the building project at Umnqophiso Pre-Primary School. The school is thrilled with their two new classrooms, which will be officially opened on Graduation Day, the 29th November 2008. Many thanks to our very generous sponsors who made this project possible.

Family Birthday & Christmas Gifts

May 8, 2008
Many thanks to Kay who raised a magnificent £172.00 for CUF by requesting cash instead of Birthday and Christmas Gifts from her family. What a fantastic idea. And many thanks to her family for their generosity.

Umnqophiso Pre-Primary School Extension on Schedule

April 13, 2008
Work started on schedule on 1st April with the removal of the roof, which has been stored for re-use on the completed building. The pre-cast concrete  floor of the second story has been delivered and installed, and work has started on the walls of the new classrooms. The ground floor is being refurbished in preparation for the school’s reopening next week after the spring break.

Emfundisweni Pre-Primary School becomes another CUF beneficiary

March 31, 2008
The school, situated in Nomzano outside Somerset West, consists two classrooms, a kitchen, toilets and play areas in a building made up of six converted containers cleverly enclosed  with walls and roof.
The school has sixty Grade R pre-primary school children and two qualified teachers. There is a playground well-equipped with playground equipment, and a large vegetable garden providing food for school meals.
After visiting the school and discussing immediate needs with the head teacher, CUF has donated a photocopier to the school. Shown here is Nomalizo Pikashe, the head teacher,  with the new machine.

Fund raising dinner

November 23, 2007
CUF’s very successful first fund raising dinner raised £1000.00. It was a very happy magical evening, thoroughly enjoyed by everyone. Many thanks to all who took part and gave so generously.

Great news

October 22, 2007
CUF has obtained a grant of £750.00 from the Sisi and Savita Charitable Trust, and a grant of £25 000.00 from the Zoe Carss Education Trust.
This will enable us to build three new classrooms at Umnqophiso Pre-primary school.
Many thanks for your help.

Instead of flowers

October 6, 2007
Many thanks to the Borrie family for the very generous donation of £132.03 which was given in place of flowers at the funeral of their father Ernie.

Thank you

October 20, 2006
We would like to thank all donors for their generous gifts.
CUF has received £568.00 so far.

Books arrived at Umnqophiso

October 20, 2006
The books from Turtle River School, Jupiter, USA have arrived at Umnqophiso Pre-primary School South Africa amidst much excitement. Here are some pictures.

Lizeka Madlolo - Professional medical sign language interpreter

Januari 24, 2016
I am humbled and blessed to have people like you in my life. The hard work and determination that I had when I started doing Sign Language would have been in vain without your support. I am grateful that you did not know who I was, but you trusted me. You invested your money and time to build me to be the woman I am today. Over the years I have grown as an interpreter. It was not easy but the support of Marion and the team kept me going. In the process of my growth I had opportunities to interpret for the government, the University of Free State. Years ago this was all a dream. Thank you. Words are not enough to express my gratitude.
Thank you so much. Lizeka Madlolo

Nombulelo Cekwana - Professional medical sign language interpreter

Januari 24, 2016
My name is Nombulelo Cekwana from Cape Town. I am working for the University of Cape Town on a project that offers sign language interpreters for Deaf people. I am writing to you to give thanks for the wonderful support you have given us throughout the years. It has made a huge impact on my career and most of all in the deaf community. Thank you for believing in us and investing on our future. Your blessings have spread all over Cape Town and now we have started working with deaf children as well. They enjoy having interpreters. Their smiles keep us going. We believe that deaf people with sign language and interpreters can have same access to health and information. I hope all is well on your side and thank you so much. Your support is highly appreciated and may God bless you and the Church so much. Keep on spreading the light and love. Kind Regards Nombulelo Cekwana

Special evening at the Tower of London

June 10, 2015
CUF arranged an exciting and informative evening at the Tower of London to thank donors for their very generous donations.

School building project completed

December 2013
The final phase of the Umnqophiso Pre-Primary School Building Project has reached completion, with the commissioning two new classrooms and a hall. Thanks once again to Bill and Fiona and the Thomas Family Trust.

Works begins at Umnqophiso pre-Primary School

November 24, 2012
The next phase of the extension has begun with the addition of a hall on the 1st floor of the South building. This will be followed by the addition of two more class rooms on the 1st floor of the West Building. All this had been made possible by the generous donation of The Thomas Family Trust. Thank you Bill and Fiona. (We will need all the help we can get to help the school equip these new facilities)

University of Cape Town Bursaries

November 24, 2012
We have also awarded a bursary to Philile Dumisa who is studying for a medical degree. She has completed her first year and is very enthusiastic about her course.

Another Delivery from the Knit-&-Stitch Group

February 12, 2012
The children at Umnqophiso Pre-Primary school were very happy to receive 34 pullovers and 8 jerseys knitted in the school’s colours by the Knit-&-Stitch ladies in Lymington. We also passed on 44 woollen hats for delivery to Sister Diniso at the Sir Lowry’s Pass clinic for her to give to babies in need.
Many thanks to Clare and the ladies for all their hard work.

Umnqophiso Pre-Primary Wins Award

November 6, 2011
We are delighted to be able to tell you that Umnqophiso Pre-Primary School, which is supported by the Children of the Universe Foundation, has won the award for the best Pre-Primary School in the Western Cape Province. The school is now going forward to the South African National School Awards which take place in the new year. Good luck Victoria and your team.

Lymington Fundraising Dinner clears £1891.50

October 14, 2011
CUF held their third fundraising dinner at the Walhampton Arms on Friday 14th October 2011. Some wonderful prizes were donated by local businesses and generous sponsors, and a lot of fun was had by the 67 supporters who came along to enjoy the excellent dinner, with great music provided by the Chris Walker Swingtet.
A magnificent amount of £1891.50 was raised.
Many thanks to all who made it such an enjoyable success.

Umnqophiso Pre-Primary School Receives Donation from Turtle River

June 26, 2011
Sarah and Erik handed over a cheque for R8140-50 to Victoria Mangqwengqwe at Umnqophiso Pre-Primary School on 24th June.
This very generous donation was raised through a sponsored Read-a-Thon held at Turtle River School in Jupiter, Florida. In saying thanks to Turtle River, Victoria said the money would be used to create another “Quiet Corner” in one of the remaining two classrooms still to receive one. She said that there should also be enough to sponsor the school fees for another pupil next year.
Well done Sarah and Erik, and many thanks to Turtle River for another wonderful donation.

Winter Woollies for Umnqophiso Children

May 30, 2011
CUF received 56 woollen jerseys and 68 woollen hats hand knitted by the Lymington Catholic Church ‘Knit and Stitch’ Group. We delivered them to Umnqophiso Pre-primary School where they were received with much excitement and many thanks.

Sir Lowry’s Pass Jewellery Production Takes Off

May 11, 2011
Six months ago CUF provided R 5000-00 as start-up funding for a new initiative to manufacture costume jewellery in Sir Lowry’s Pass Village. We are delighted to report that there are now three ladies making and supplying jewellery to an outlet in Germany. Well done Lorna and thank you Hanna and Helmut for all that you are doing for the Sir Lowry’s Pass community.

New Forest Marathon Supports CUF

April 26, 2011
Many thanks to the participants in the New Forest Marathon for their donation of £75.00. And thank you Lisa for making CUF your charity of choice. 


Jamie’s Hair Ripping Appeal

July 29, 2010
As of 29th July 2010, Jamie Summers has raised a fantastic £895 for CUF. On the 21st July there was a Senior British Military Advisor team BBQ in Tampa, Florida, at which Jamie parted with his chest hair. A huge thank you to Jamie for enduring the pain and to everyone who has donated so generously.

CUF and JustGiving

July 20 , 2010
We’ve teamed up with JustGiving, the UK’s leading online fundraising website, so you can donate and raise funds for us online. Using JustGiving reduces our admin burden so we have more time to get on with other aspects of CUF’s work. It’s easy to make a single or monthly donation with a credit or debit card online. All you need to do is go to If you’re a UK tax payer, JustGiving reclaims Gift Aid automatically and pays donations to us directly at the end of every week. The site is 100% secure. It’s also really easy for you to raise money for us by creating an online fundraising page on JustGiving. It takes just a few minutes and you can collect donations for any sponsored event or appeal. You can create a fundraising page for absolutely anything. You could get sponsored to run, swim, cycle, get fit, grow a moustache or have your head shaved! Just go to:

Lymington Fundraising Dinner clears £1246.80

July 16, 2010
CUF held their second fundraising event with dinner at the Walhampton Arms. With the help of wonderful prizes donated by local businesses and generous sponsors a magnificent amount of £1246.80 was raised.
Thanks to all who came and made it such an enjoyable success.

Turtles raise funds for Umnqophiso

April 2010
Teachers at Umnqophiso pre-primary school made beadwork turtle badges which have been sold by Sarah and Erik at Turtle River School in Jupiter, Florida, to raise funds for Umnqophiso.
A magnificent $640.00 was raised. Well done Sarah and Erik

CUF Receives Donation from the Netherlands for Umnqophiso

May 28, 2009
The 2009 First Communion Classes at the St. Victor Catholic Church in Noordwijkerhout, Netherlands, have raised an amazing EU711.41 which they have asked CUF to pass on to Umnqophiso Pre-Primary School for more equipment for their new classrooms.
Many thanks for this wonderful donation, and thank you Jolanda for making it happen.

Joy Bracelet sale at Turtle River Raises Funds for Umnqophiso

April 30, 2009
Sarah and Erik raised a magnificent R5307.45 by selling Joy Bracelets to their classmates at Turtle River Montessori School in Jupiter, Florida.
The bracelets are made by the Phakamani ladies group at Umnqophiso Pre-Primary School. The school will use the money to buy much needed classroom equipment for their two new classrooms.
Thank you Turtle River!

Joy Bracelets to raise funds for Umnqophiso Pre-Primary School

March 9, 2009
CUF has arranged for 100 Joy Bracelets made by the parents of Umnqophiso children to be delivered to Jupiter, Florida. Sarah and Erik will be selling these bracelets to their classmates at Turtle River School to raise funds for Umnqophiso. Good luck Sarah and Erik.

Alstom foundation grant provides funding for HEEP Eco-Schools program

Paris, France, September 16, 2008
CUF has obtained a R570 000 grant from the Alstom Foundation,, to enable the Helderberg Environmental Education Project to introduce the WWF Eco-Schools Program in under-privileged schools in the Helderberg area.
The objective of this program is to educate as many as 5,000 children about the importance of environment, the current challenges and the need to preserve it for a sustainable development.
The program will establish and support Eco-Schools programs in at least five schools per year. These programs include establishing food gardens, compost and soil erosion projects, re-cycling projects, pollution control projects, healthy living projects, energy and water saving projects. All this work is taken on by the schools as it will become part of the school curriculum. HEEP provides support and training to achieve this. The funding for the program is channelled through CUFT which already successfully sponsors HEEP for other environmental education activities.
Peter Stuttaford accepting the Foundation Award from Alstom’s Patrick Dubert, Director of Human Resources , at the Awards Function in Paris on 16th September 2008.

Umnqophiso pre-primary school benefits from Turtle River annual fundraising auction

March 31, 2008
A group of teenagers spend time after school at Umnqophiso manufacturing jewellery from broken bottles collected around the township.
Furthering the friendship arrangement between Umnqophiso and Turtle River, five sets of necklaces were purchased by Keith & Peter from this group and donated to the two schools. These were then auctioned at Turtle River’s annual fundraiser in Jupiter, Florida. An amount of $900-00 was raised, which has been split between the two schools. Umnqophiso has used the funds to purchase a set of painting easels and drying racks for each of their three Grade R classrooms.

Extension plans

March 9, 2008
Plans for extensions to Umnqophiso Pre-Primary School have been submitted for approval by the local authorities. Work on the first phase, which will provide space for an additional 60 children, is scheduled to begin at the school on 1st April 2008. Many thanks to the sponsors who have made this possible.

In memory of

November 17, 2007
CUF has received a donation of £500.00 in memory of Mrs. Kathleen Hill.
Many thanks to her daughter Sheila Quinn.

Wedding donations

October 13, 2007
CUF received donations amounting to £342.33 instead of wedding presents from guests at the marriage of Maria and Graham.
Thanks to the guests and the Bride and Groom. We wish them all the best for the future.

CUF goes international

July 24, 2007
The Children of the Universe Foundation is a registered UK charity from today.

Turtle River Pre-primary School

May 18, 2006
Turtle River Pre-primary school in Jupiter, Florida USA, collected 300 books last week to send to Umnqophiso Pre-Primary school in Somerset West, South Africa.
The schools have set up a friendship link with each other through the CUF Trustees.