HOPE South Africa: A Seed of HOPE is Being Planted by Sanlam Volunteers

Monday, May 9, 2011 marked the start of the Sanlam – Operation HOPE, South Africa financial literacy education partnership.  The first class of learners were taught by HOPE Corps Volunteers, Carmen Williams and Gaynor Claassen at Bellville South High School. They were well prepared and the learners responded enthusiastically to the experiential methodology employed.  The other two schools are Luhlaza High in Khayelitsha and Fairmount High School in Grassy Park.  Classes in these schools start on Wednesday 11 and Tuesday 17 May respectively.

Over the past few months Sanlam and HOPE staff have worked together to provide two orientation sessions with hundreds of Sanlam employees with the goal of recruiting volunteers to implement the Banking on Our Future Financial Literacy education program in high schools in Gauteng and the Western Cape provinces. The volunteer orientation sessions were jointly conducted by HOPE and Sanlam senior staff members. Following the orientation sessions, Sanlam volunteers signed up for the program and training sessions for both provinces were scheduled.

A total  number of 98 Sanlam employees signed up to become HOPE Corps Volunteers and were trained in the Banking on Our Future program. In the Western Cape 61 volunteers were trained and in Gauteng 37 volunteers were trained in three different sessions. Volunteers were provided with the BOOF curriculum to allow them to educate learners in the six schools identified for the first cycle of programming.The schedules for volunteer programming in schools were provided by the HOPE program managers in both provinces. These schedules were finalized in consultation with the selected schools with input from Sanlam. All trained volunteers were provided with branded portfolio bags to safely and professionally store the newly enhanced BOOF training materials.

In addition to BOOF programming, focus group sessions with grades 10, 11 and 12 learners will be conducted by an external consultant.  The objective is to determine the level of knowledge prior to the actual work in the classrooms.  This will help HOPE to assess the impact of the BOOF sessions conducted by Sanlam volunteers.

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