A Note of Appreciation

I’d like to express my thanks to the countless individuals—both locally hired and volunteers—who provided invaluable help in designing and constructing the Makuya Empowered Voices Resource Center. In particular, appreciation goes out to:

Paul Marias, eco-architect and know-everything man who aided in designing the center; provided construction guidance; transported me on multiple days to pick up 10 computers from customs in Joburg, provided Linux software and essential computer knowledge, and had a general personal investment in the project that pushed me through the rough spots.

Fhatuwani Makuya, the local Tshulu Trust volunteer manager who provided moral support and local knowledge, without which this project would have been impossible to manage.

Start Mudzinani, a local builder who volunteered on his weekend to do a wide variety of construction projects—floor, doors, ceiling, and painting—when money and time got tight.

Thendo, a young volunteer construction worker who often worked harder than many paid workers throughout construction of the center. He also took the initiative to dig the toilet pit.

Margaret Mudau, Thiemulwi Ndou, and Maureen Mudzanani, the women who volunteered to clean.

Mr. Malala, who volunteered time on the weekend to help with electricity installation.

Alfred, a welder on the project, who also provided an extension cord at multiple stages of construction.

Neighbors on all sides of the center who provided storage space, helped with construction, and gave access to electricity.

The three gentlemen who were recruited by Fhatuwani to load water and sand and install window panes.

Neighboring kids, who filled my days with playfulness, weeded the yard, and painted the center.

Colbert, who painted the center and the shelves.

Mutshekwa Matshamis, a local woman who harvested reeds and allowed me to interrupt her party to collect the bundles.

Guilt, who made the ceiling and floor, kept the center secure, and did countless other odd jobs.

Moses, an artist who created and installed two murals.

Opa, a carpenter who made the inverted roof, desks, and tables.

Mpho, the electrician.

Simeon Makuya, a contactor who hired builders to construct the center and who also participated in hands-on construction.

Fhatuwani Makuya, a builder who helped construct the center.

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  • RMoon


    I’ve been following your updates on the Makuya Empowered Voices Resource Center and I’m glad to hear it’s been completed and is up and running. That is an amazing thing for you to do and is very encouraging to see. Truly and inspiration for those of us who want to ‘change the world’ – we don’t have to do a big, grand gesture. We can simply help those who are less fortunate than ourselves in some manner or area of their lives and in making their lives better, enrich our own.

    Thank you so much for sharing.

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