Here’s to another year of hope!

It was such a great HOPE in my life to know that, things will work and I had full confidence and strength to make my dreams come true, I have experienced this power of hope, once a WATIPA alumni and proudly WATIPA ambassador in my country.

Aldo Castory Sanga, Watipa Alumni (2019), Tanzania

I can’t believe it’s been five years already. Here’s to many more years WATIPA Community! 2021 is just another year which gives us another great reason to celebrate the power of HOPE in our life.

Look what HOPE can do just in a period of few years. I congratulate WATIPA:

  • Management of successful scholarships
  • Launch of MWATIPASA (sister’s organization of WATIPA) in Malawi
  • Mentorship for scholars and graduates
  • Support for scholars and graduates who intends to ‘pay it forward’ in their respective communities. This ensure that we (scholars and graduates) remain inspiring agents of change.

While celebrating the 5th year of WATIPA, I would like to share the following tips/lessons [Inspired by WATIPA] with my fellow youth who have various ambitions towards making world a better place for living. Let’s honor the power of HOPE.

First, never give up on yourself.

Dear youth, it doesn’t matter what happens to you, don’t crawl up and hide. Just HOPE that, tomorrow must be greater than today.Let’s face the storm, willing to seek for guidance from the people; life is all about people (‘maisha ni watu’-Swahili). There are people out there who believes in you and are ready to help in one way or another. Stay focused, full of hope that there’s better tomorrow if not tomorrow, things will work someday. There was never a night or a problem that could defeat sunrise or HOPE. Just HOPE and be confident!

Second, life is all about people (‘maisha ni watu’-Swahili).

Everything in this world exists in relationship to everything else. Dear youth, you need others as they need you. Establishing trust in any relationship is very important. With people comes opportunities, knowledge, experience and connection among other things. WATIPA enriched us with all these and more. We (scholars and graduates) learned the significance of working with people and not against them. 

Third, honor the power of generosity.

WATIPA taught us the significance of ‘pay-it-forward’. WATIPA believed in us, supported us and here we are; scholars, graduates and of course, ambassadors representing the power of HOPE in our respective nations. Well, I’ve learned that, when you help others, they help you in return in unexpected ways. By making a difference in our educational career and lives, WATIPA sowed a seed that will bear fruits for the betterment pf all people in our communities. Whenever possible, help. The world needs you!

Fourth, live a life of purpose.

Dear youth, who do you think you are? Well, you’re a human being crafted in the image of God! What’s your purpose for your existence in this world? When WATIPA launched these scholarships in 2016, one of the key criteria for selection and award was, ‘be someone who is willing to pay back to your community.’ Purpose is passionate and thus we scholars were supposed to listen to that voice speaking to us from within. We, WATIPA scholars and graduates; are proudly committed to our various purposes of impacts in our communities.

Fifth, happy WATIPA 5th anniversary!

I would like to present my warmest congratulations for every progress WATIPA has made so far, to the WATIPA board of Directors, Trustees, scholars and graduates, donors and well-wishers and the whole WATIPA Community.

HOPE is seeing the light through all the darkness! WATIPA is HOPE!

#Watipa #WatipaHope #PayItForward #WatipaIsFive

#MaishaNiWatu #LifeIsAllAboutPeople #maishaniwatu #PayItForward

WATIPA 5TH ANNIVERSARY…Here to Many More Years of Hope!!!

Aldo Castory Sanga

Watipa Alumnae (2019)

Tanzania

Celebrating 5 years and the achievements of Watipa scholars.

11 June 2016. Now that seems like a lifetime ago, especially after the upheavals since 2020.

11 June 2016 was the first official registration of Watipa, as a social enterprise, with Companies House in the UK. The following year, the registration with the Charities Commission followed.

What has Watipa achieved?

We are immensely proud that to date Watipa has awarded 123 scholarships to young leaders in 9 low and middle income countries who intend to apply their education to give back to their communities. As of 2021, 23 Watipa scholars have graduated in fields including medicine, fisheries, veterinary science, communications, development studies, engineering and public administration.

Communities in Tanzania, Ghana, Malawi, Zambia, Nepal, Kenya, Uganda, Democratic Republic of Congo, and South Africa will all benefit further from the vision, leadership and determination of Watipa scholars.

Who inspires us?

Watipa scholars and our generous donors in equal measure.

2020 was a year of great challenges and learning opportunities, as well as stimulating profound reflection – for every institution and individual alike. COVID-19 triggered a moment in time that has demanded innovation, leadership and lateral thinking in response to the pressing immediate concerns raised by the pandemic. For Watipa, the charitable activities in relation to the awarding of scholarships and mentorship support for the scholars remained unchanged. This is remarkable – and only possible, because of the even more remarkable unwavering support of our donors, and the commitment and dedication of Watipa scholars to continuing their studies during these challenging times.

Even though most of the scholars faced uncertainty about their studies during 2020, as educational institutions were closed and access to the necessary technology, data and bandwidth for online learning was challenging or unreliable, we celebrate the achievements of 12 young leaders who graduate in this cycle.

One of the inaugural Watipa scholars has just shared this quotation, which is the perfect summary of our five years so far:

“There is no such thing as ‘self-made’ man. We are made up of thousands of others. Everyone who has ever done a kind deed for us, or spoken one word of encouragement to us, has entered into the make-up of our character and of our thoughts, as well as our success.”

George Burton Adams (1851-1925), an American Medievalist Historian

We will be profiling our recent graduates over the coming weeks, so stay tuned for some good and inspiring news.

To all the friends, supporters, volunteers and scholars of Watipa – we salute you, and thank you for your generosity and vision to improve our world. Today you also share in our 5th birthday celebrations!

Happy Zero Discrimination Day!

There are not that many international days that I am particularly proud to be associated with… but it just so happens that two are within a week of each other: today, Zero Discrimination Day, and 8th March, International Women’s Day. Both are in my DNA.

I stand for Zero Discrimination.

Especially amid a world of bleak news (both fake and real), it feels strong and stabilising to remember the core principles that are so central to who we are. Having grown up (still growing up?!) supported and surrounded by open mindedness and principles of social justice, and continuing to work to reduce the harmful effects of stigma and discrimination specifically in relation to HIV, 1 March is a nexus of the personal and professional. In 2021, it is grounding to pause and mark such a day.

Principles of inclusion and celebrating diversity are equally at the heart of Watipa – our ways of working, and the scholars and projects supported through our programmes. We were founded by a group of international women, and continue to provide educational support to young leaders – the majority of whom are women.

I hope everyone can take a moment today to connect to the principle and pursuit of zero discrimination. It is so important and still so out of grasp for so many. We can do more to enable this to change. Here’s to hope for a brighter future for ourselves and generations to come.

~ Lucy Stackpool-Moore

International Human Rights Day – important, as ever, in 2020

“Where, after all, do universal human rights begin? In small places, close to home — so close and so small that they cannot be seen on any maps of the world. […] Unless these rights have meaning there, they have little meaning anywhere. Without concerted citizen action to uphold them close to home, we shall look in vain for progress in the larger world.” ~ Eleanor Roosevelt

From our homes to yours, we would like to wish the friends and family of Watipa a happy and inspirational International Human Rights day today!

As we near the end of 2020, we are reminded of just how important these fundamental principles and freedoms are. The United Nations has put together a collection to honour the day, including a focus on the women who contributed and shaped the Universal Declaration of Human Rights.

Happy reading – happy day – and we salute the Watipa scholars who are leading small and large efforts to promote human rights in many different places around the world…

To the young leaders of today – we salute you!

Today, 12 August 2020, is International Youth Day. Just like many of these international days, it is a day to be mindful of certain issues that exist, thrive and need nurturing in equal measure throughout all 365 days of the year.

In small and large ways, Watipa scholars, their peers, and many young people are achieving great things within their communities. Today is a day to recognise and celebrate those efforts, and take solace in the prospect of better and brighter things in the future as the young leaders of today take their ideas, vision and new perspectives to an even greater scale in times to come.

COVID-19 has challenged us all this year, and has posed barriers for young people in many facets of life – pursuing studies and gaining work experience, accessing new skills and mentorship, engaging in civil and political debates virtually to name just a few. Continue reading “To the young leaders of today – we salute you!”

Watipa turns 12, and 4, all in the same week…

This has been a milestone week for Watipa. Now, even more than ever, it’s so important to celebrate small moments and take the time to celebrate the really important things in life.

The ‘real’ Watipa, our namesake who lives and is at school in the north of Malawi, turned 12. Happy birthday Watipa! She is looking forward to school starting up again in July, and she will be in Standard 8. Just a few days earlier, Watipa the organisation turned 4. Happy birthday Watipa! We raised a toast to the friends near and far, whose vision, camaraderie and hard work have enabled us to get this far…

We send best regards to all friends, family and supporters of Watipa and hope that you are well and doing as best as possible during these uncertain times.

Congratulations graduates – we’re proud of you, and we’re listening

This International Human Rights Day we are celebrating “Watipa style” by focussing on the number of graduates we have had in 2019 supported through our scholarship programme. Thirteen… and counting. This takes the total graduates since the start of the Watipa scholarship programme to more than 20, across 7 countries (Democratic Republic of Congo, Kenya, Malawi, Nepal, South Africa, Tanzania, Uganda), in just 3 years. These are real life examples of what it means to have the right to education.

We’re proud of our graduates, and they are proud to be Watipa scholars. Here’s what they said in their review of the programme this year. 

“Being on the Watipa scholarship programme gave me courage to do better, knowing that someone somewhere cares about my education as I care about it. This feeling made me proud .”

Naomi Nyasulu, Malawi, Bachelor of Science in Aquaculture and Fisheries Science, Lilongwe University of Agriculture and Natural Resources Continue reading “Congratulations graduates – we’re proud of you, and we’re listening”

Could you be Watipa’s new Chair of the Board of Trustees?

Are you passionate about education? Do you believe that young people have the ideas and solutions to develop and solve problems facing their communities? Do you have experience in charity governance in the UK? Do you have time, energy and vision to chair the Board of Trustees of Watipa? Are you willing to volunteer your time? Would you like to gain more experience with a dynamic, nimble, ethical, intelligent and worthwhile charity?

If you answered yes to these questions – or know someone inspirational who could – please get in touch. Watipa is looking for a dynamic, experienced, visionary and responsible person to join the Board of Trustee and take on the role of Chair.

Continue reading “Could you be Watipa’s new Chair of the Board of Trustees?”

Launched today: Study by Watipa scholars for UNAIDS and the PACT about the role of young people in community responses to HIV

Geneva, Switzerland. Hot off the press: Watipa, UNAIDS, and the PACT launch study today about the importance of youth participation in community responses to HIV. Watipa scholars were the researchers in this important project. Join the conversation and take part in the Facebook Live session that is happening now…

Ruben Pages Ramos, Youth Programmes Coordinator at UNAIDS, chats with Allen Kyendikuwa, sexual and reproductive health and rights advocate and Watipa Associate, about the results. Allen Kyendikuwa was one of the lead young researchers in the report launched today.

Continue reading “Launched today: Study by Watipa scholars for UNAIDS and the PACT about the role of young people in community responses to HIV”