Who we are
We are the Students Health and Welfare Centres Organisation, better known by our acronym, SHAWCO. We strive to create supportive spaces for experiential learning and teaching and to address inequality through innovative and sustainable approaches to community engagement. We enrol UCT student volunteers.
We are the largest student-led NPO in Africa.
“Did you know that the University of Cape Town’s students volunteered their time in resource-constrained communities since 1943?”
Under the SHAWCO umbrella, you will find two major pillars: SHAWCO Health and SHAWCO Education (which includes SHAWCO Law).
SHAWCO Health offers nighttime and weekends mobile health services to communities around the Cape Town Metro.
SHAWCO Education’s projects include after-school tutoring, violence prevention and mentorship programmes for high school learners. The Law clinics offer UCT LLB student volunteers to assist with legal matters, the constitution, and other rights to the communities in an easily accessible and easy-to-understand manner.
1943SHAWCO beganSHAWCO was started in July 1943 by Andrew Kinnear and Dr Golda Selzer, a UCT medical student who spent his vacation driving an ambulance to earn money to pay for his medical training.
1994SHAWCO model extended to includeSHAWCO moved from welfare to a development model – still running primary healthcare clinics but moving to skills development and education programmes through the “welfare” arm.
2001SHAWCO’s Life PresidentIn 2001, Mrs. Graça Machel agreed to become SHAWCO’s new life president.
2003SHAWCO focuses on Youth EducationSHAWCO narrows the developmental sector to Youth Education. SHAWCO Education focuses more on Youth Development.
Meet the team
SHAWCO is student-led, but not student-managed. We rely on a core group of staff members who mentor and support the students, assist with logistics, monitor, oversee programmes, and have strict controls in place regarding finance and governance.
Student Resource Coordinator & Social Worker
Prof Salome Maswime
Nominee by VC
Prof Danwood Chirwa
UCT council representative
Prof Jackie Stewart
SHAWCO Executive Director (ex officio)
SHAWCO Education Sector Exec member
Ramses Peigou Wonkam
SHAWCO Health Sector Exec member
Dr Peace Francis
UCT alumnus or staff member nominated by Health Exec
UCT alumnus or staff member nominated by Education Exec and Deputy Chairperson
UCT SRC representative for a two year term
Prof Goolam Modack
Prof Tracey Naledi
Dr Tim Tucker
Being South Africa's largest student-led NPO in Africa, SHAWCO is blessed to have partnered with many sponsors over the 80 years the organisation has existed. We’re proud to state that through the commitments made by these founders, we will continue to make a lasting impact on the communities in need.
Contact us to learn more about how you can become a funder today.
WANT TO GET INVOLVED?
Every cent matters. Every action makes a difference. Every effort is appreciated. Find out how you can make an impact here.