South Africa

flag South Africa is the first (and currently only) country The UMKULO Project is actively helping. It is called the “Rainbow Nation” for a reason. With 11 official languages and cultural influences from all over the world, South Africa is one of the most diverse nations on earth.

It is the richest country in Africa and in the top 30 wealthiest in the world. Because South Africa has experienced prosperity compared to most other African nations, it has become the jewel of the continent. Other countries look to South Africa as the beacon for hope yet major challenges still face the infant democracy.

cape townSouth Africa is a first-world country with third-world hardships. Even with its bustling metropolises and beautiful landscapes, it ranks 1st in the world in rape, murder and assaults per capita. 5.3 million people are living with HIV/AIDS, which is more than any other country in the world. The life expectancy is only 42.5 years and half the entire population is living below the poverty line.

pic6The poor see the skyscrapers and the luxury homes and the fine-dining restaurants. They have this taste in their mouth for all the good that comes with democracy, but they never dream they can actually get there. Until 1994, South Africa experienced racial oppression, but now it has become an economic oppression. The rich keep getting richer and the poor continue to grow poorer with the widest income gap in the world.

500-dsc_0871South Africans have a sort of double wammy. Not only are they living through one of the most difficult poverties in all of Africa, but they know that changes should have happened by now ever since democracy took over the country 15 years ago. Because of this demoralizing blow, and realization that the poor’s chances are just as bad as ever, alcohol and drug abuse are widespread. Sex is rampant and with it, the spread of AIDS.

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The UMKULO Project sees South Africa as an opportunity. They have educated musicians who want to teach. They have infrastructure better than most African nations. They just don’t have the resources as abundantly as they need to successfully teach music education to the poor on a large scale. Therefore, we have teamed with the Mobile Music Academy in Cape Town to begin our mission to provide resources to music educators.

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