PROTEC wins Best NPO in Education Award from Prestige
PROTEC, a national NPO with an excellent track record since 1982 of providing educational support to disadvantaged high school students for successful STEM (science, technology, engineering, mathematics) careers, has won the Corporate Livewire South Africa Prestige 2020/2021 Best NPO in Education Award.
PROTEC proved its capabilities and commitment in the 2020 pandemic year with remarkable matric results: 283 matriculants from 75 disadvantaged schools in Gauteng, KwaZulu-Natal, Limpopo and Mpumalanga achieved a 100% pass rate, an 86% bachelor pass rate, a total of 447 distinctions, and the top 10 learners – seven of whom are female – achieved seven and more distinctions each.
PROTEC’s history goes back to its launch in 1982 in Soweto by the South African Institute of Civil Engineers to help high school children in disadvantaged communities prepare for STEM careers. Today PROTEC’s team provides holistic educational support through a hybrid approach, using the best of both online and in-class lessons in maths, science, technology, and English, as well as World of Work lessons covering life skills training, and application and preparation for tertiary studies.
According to Balan Moodley, CEO of PROTEC, the Prestige judges were impressed by PROTEC’s proven track record that has seen more than 30,000 students graduating and embarking on a wide range of STEM and other careers over almost 40 years. “We are extremely delighted to win this important award, and to be recognised for our consistent good results.”
Moodley says that the NPO’s 2020 matric results are particularly noteworthy. “The PROTEC team and the 2020 matriculants pulled out all the stops to ensure lessons continued – often against almost impossible odds – throughout the hard lockdowns, with the students and PROTEC overcoming challenges of limited or no data, a lack of devices, and other social issues.”
He adds that PROTEC is extremely proud of all its beneficiaries, staff and facilitators, who frequently burned the midnight oil in 2020 to ensure that lessons and learning continued as best as possible within the constraints of the pandemic. “The overarching aim of all our intervention programmes is to see a vast improvement in the number of students succeeding in STEM subjects – and we know that engaging them with accessible and relevant student-centred subject content is key to achieving that. Regardless of external circumstances, we strive to consistently reach our goals.”
PROTEC’s excellent results have paved the way for the NPO to attract funding and support from local and international donors, while also frequently renewing contracts with existing donors. In addition, the growing ranks of PROTEC Alumni provide significant support by contributing time, encouragement, and other resources to the current cohort of PROTEC students.
PROTEC, which is wholly dependent on donor support, believes that the number of young people succeeding in STEM careers must grow to boost job creation and economic stability in South Africa, and that programmes such as PROTEC’s need to expand to meet the country’s critical scarce skills needs.
The Prestige Awards recognise small and medium organisations that have proven to be the best in their market over 12 months, and judging criteria includes service excellence, quality of service provided, innovative practices, value, ethical or sustainable methods of working, and consistency in performance.
For more information on PROTEC, visit www.protec.org.za