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Executivr Directors Not

Today, the 1st of March 2023, marks 200 days in office as Executive Director at SSP – time flies when you have impactful work to do! My appointment could not have come at a more opportune time and possibly the busiest six months in the calendar of the organisation. This newsletter is an engaging reflection of what me and the team have been up to since the last edition was published. Our intention with this news roundup is to draw a picture of the organization’s point of view, acknowledge the support we have from our stakeholders and sounding out a call to action to our extended community of partners, as we work through the planned programme year. 

I am happy to have reconnected with the development and stakeholder communities of the organisation starting with visits to partner schools. It was an honour to have met with Heads of Schools as I caught up on the changes and advancements being made, a year post-pandemic, as schooling resumed fully. I am motivated by the commitment of our partner schools to the SSP programme as a whole and look forward to more meetings and catch-ups as the year progresses. Following the partner school visits was meeting with our donors – to be able to engage with sponsors and donors in our programme in the forward look of the organisation is truly a privilege I do not take for granted. We are grateful to the generosity of individual donors, sponsors and partners whose care, investment and dedication to SSP enables us to do this impactful work.  We welcome ATC South Africa to our donor network; I had the pleasure of meeting the ATC team in South Africa and the CEO for Africa. Your contributions to SSP continues to impact the lives of families and entire communities, by leveraging education as a mechanism to break the cycle of poverty in South Africa. Thank you for making it possible for us to continue developing leaders.

We celebrated the astounding results of our scholars at the recent Graduation Ceremony held at St Johns College in Houghton. 100% Matric Pass and 93% Bachelor’s degree pass! This was a full circle moment for me; the graduating class is the last in the cohort I recruited between 2015 to 2018 as Recruitment Director. It was an absolute joy to welcome parents, Heads of Schools, donors, mentors, scholars, and the resilient Class of 2022 to the first in-person event for the year. I travelled to East London for the Eastern Cape leg of graduation and met parents, scholars and leaders in the province. A hearty thank you to Mrs. Patrick for welcoming me and SSP guests at Clarendon High School for Girls.  Take a look at our graduation programme book for an in-depth view as well as the remarkable strides made by our alumni: Class of 2022 Graduation Programme Book

We welcome Lerato Thahane to the SSP Board of Trustees. Lerato is an SSP alumnus, a leader and a formidable M&A lawyer. We look forward to work with Lerato to advance the cause to develop leaders.
I got to witness some significant milestones as some of the SSP Staff celebrated their work anniversaries – Thandeka Skhosana (10 years), Sheri-Ann van Dyk (8 years) and Linda Mnisi (8 years). It’s an absolute joy to work with a dedicated team. Thank you ladies, your passion and commitment to SSP is appreciated. This is going to be a remarkable year for us as we build on the upcoming 25th anniversary celebrations in 2025. 
The rest of the news will now follow. That is all from me!

Namhla Ruselo
SSP Executive Director