Vuyo Koyana shares reflections on her experiences as part of Be The Earth's Flow Funding programme. She tells us about the diverse causes, projects and groups she chose to fund, showing how this methodology can have a powerful impact beyond the scope of traditional philanthropy.
Good day, my name is Vuyo Koyana. I live in Cape Town, South Africa. I am a flow funder. And in the year 2023, I've been able to use flow funds in ways that have impacted my immediate community and beyond in ways that I'm really proud of.
Firstly, I was able to support a children's art center which is based in Mfuleni, one of the poorest communities in Cape Town. And the support took the form of taking the children out on excursions, paying the curators of particular art activities to support them for specific events that related to their church calendar.
Also, it took the form of supporting them with the building, the structure, the temporary structure that they use for their activities, which they share with a church in the same region. So we were able to fix the roof, which was leaking. and was incompletely finished, incompletely built actually as part of the building and construction process of this temporary structure when it was secured. And we have also committed to support with the flooring of the structure. We went some ways towards it, but it's not entirely complete at this stage. So there's that and it's also the ceiling, which remain outstanding. And these are commitments we've made and we'll still be able to support the community, the art community, and I guess then indirectly the church also. That would have been the bulk of the flow funding that I had received for this year.
But I've also been able to support a rural project, which looks at early childhood literacy development and links many rural areas in the Eastern Cape province of South Africa, which is an area that I also have links and ties with as I come from there originally. So, yeah, that as well as just individual contributions to people who have needed health-related support, travel to support families during times of funeral, or even or even directly participating in funerals of people who are very close to them, that they would otherwise have not been able to carry through. This has been particularly important as income flows have been affected for a lot of people post the COVID pandemic. We're seeing a lot of unemployment. We're seeing... a lot of older people being out of work before their retirement age and not being able to get themselves reinstated in the world of work. And so this has had huge impacts on grandmothers and grandfathers looking after grandchildren where their children are no longer alive, for instance. So this is where some of the support has come in, where the individuals are concerned.
There also has been support directed at transport related costs for people attending a choir circle that I'm a part of. It's a healing circle. It is a community building circle, it's a skills building circle, for people who are interested in song and the arts.
And again, it's another way of mitigating the joblessness, the low levels of engagement in activities that take people forward, just in general. So as part of a social justice move, I've been able to fund the transportation of people to the place of choir. And these are people who are otherwise very talented and in need of the healing as much as anybody else is, but they're just not in a position to take care of that, which sometimes feels like an extraneous or luxurious cost for them. It is becoming more and more apparent in many ways that being part of such a healing space has impacts, ripple impacts on the communities that they belong to as a whole. And so, while we're not necessarily funding the choir through this, I've been able to, as an extraneous activity, fund the transportation of those who have not been able to participate of their own accord. So it is with many thanks that I give this report and share this story with the Flow Funding Circle of 2023. Deep gratitude.
Vuyo Koyana is a traditional healer with an Applied Psychology Masters Degree from the University of Stellenbosch. She leads The Pan African Market which is a community made up of a diverse mix of continental practitioners across various entrepreneurial and creative fields. She is a full time People Development Consultant within Pan African Market Consulting and also an associate at the Centre for Conscious Leadership. She sits on some boards in the Business and Art sectors and is committed to promoting activities that empower through personal experience and learning thus ensuring enduring growth and development for both the individual and the collective.