Unizulu Foundation

Foundation Core Functions 
  • Identify key strategic University projects, aligned with UNIZULU’S mission and vision, which will enhance the University and benefit its community.
  • Collaborate on proposal writing. Capture the confidence and commitment of partners and donors/stakeholders towards supporting an established portfolio of projects, students and the community.
  • Co-ordinate and manage all fundraising efforts and initiatives, ensuring a professional and streamlined approach to potential donors/stakeholders.
  • Gather information on donors (research) and their giving policies (Corporate Social Investment), as well as opportunities for funding, for the university and its project leaders.
  • Create mechanisms for giving and mobilise resources across a range of avenues and opportunities, nationally and globally (CSIR Scholarships, Trusts and Foundations, High Net Worth Individuals, Alumni, Government agencies and Corporates).
  • Monitor all income garnered through fundraising efforts via DevMan.
  • Assist the Board in overseeing the finances of the Foundation and its investments, in order to ensure that they are invested and used appropriately.
  • Professionalise the issuing tax exemption certificates to donors, as per Section 18A of the South African Tax Act of 1962 (as amended), via DevMan.
  • Steward donations and gifts to the university, by liaising with both project leaders and donors.
  • Record activities on DevMan for the purpose of research and for more effective and fluent internal and external communication
  • Establish, manage and sustain relationships with stakeholders and donors.
  • Build a philanthropic spirit by introducing modules on giving, development and social responsibility (Ubuntu), with the possibility of infusing these values into curricula
  • Add value to the profile and community of the University, by working closely with the Communication and Marketing Division (CMD) and the Vice-Chancellor’s Office.

To sustain and partner in the advancement of the strategic goals of the University


To mobilise sustainable resources through collaborative strategic partnerships for the benefit of UNIZULU and its stakeholders

Foundation Values
  • Trust
  • Integrity
  • Transparency
  • Loyalty
  • Excellence

Dr I.B. Mkhize



Mr. S.V. Chetty

Board Member


Mr A.N.D. Vilakazi

Board Member


Prof. L.M. Magi

Board Member


Mr. T.M. Mthembu

Board Member


Mr. B Mthembu

Board Member


Ms V McKenzie

Board Member


Mrs N Mboweni

Board Member

Foundation Projects

This proposal provides a motivation for the creation of a centre to meet some of the challenges facing higher education in South Africa and to find solutions to the problems centred around mathematics at the school and post-school levels in the KZN region, specifically through intervention at the University of Zululand (UNIZULU). It argues that UNIZULU is ideally situated to assist rural schools in northern KwaZulu-Natal in improving pass rates in mathematics (and physical science). It outlines implementation plans for this intervention, the benefits it will have for students, university and community, its impact on pass rates and its sustainability.A budget of R1.81m is projected to start up and establish the proposed Centre. Nedbank Eyethu trust has generously donated R390 000 for start-up costs in 2014.

Research in the Richards Bay hub unveils critical needs which can be addressed by the introduction of technically-oriented programmes such as Electronics, Instrumentation and Electrical Engineering and Mechanical Engineering. A phased approach is planned, starting with diplomas and thereafter degrees. In fleshing out its proposed developments, the Richards Bay Campus is also proposing an engineering access programme, which will attract local high achievers. This will  be an historic development for UNIZULU, and well-timed, given its growing capacity and strategic location. Bursary support is required for students embarking on this programme, as well as contributions towards laboratory equipment.MARITIME STUDIES

As with Engineering Programmes, the introduction of eleven (11) Maritime Programmes, ranging from certificates to diplomas, at the University of Zululand is long overdue. These programmes already form part of the recently approved enrolment plan by the Department for Higher Education and Training (DHET) and to date, much progress has been made in setting up the framework for the introduction of Maritime Programmes, and the establishment of the Maritime Training School. A range of partners and collaborators have made generous contributions, attesting to their need in this booming economic and industrial zone. Further support in the region of R15m is required.

There is a general shortage of student accommodation at the University of Zululand and its surroundings. Students have to find accommodation in the immediate surroundings of the university where conditions are in most cases, inadequate.  While the majority of the university’s over 16 000 students are affected, with only 3 450 being accommodated internally, postgraduate students are especially inconvenienced as they have a constant need for access to the library and laboratories during all hours of the day and night.   The university requirements to grow its own timber arise from its postgraduate students and thus we need to be able to accommodate and increase our postgraduate student numbers in the next three years. The University needs to convert, refurbish and to some extent, re-build existing staff houses in an area that is in close proximity to the library, computer laboratories and science laboratories on the KwaDlangezwa campus, to meet these needs. An investment of R15m is being sought.

The University Choir has won many awards. They have been invited to perform in USA. They are an asset to the University as they can perform during events like graduation Ceremonies. Choir general needs are ongoing: uniforms, travel, instruments, subsistence.

The CSL is a state-of-the-art facility that materially and physically simulates hospital ward, trauma and emergency, maternity, intensive care and isolation settings through computerized adult, paediatric and infant patient simulators. The CSL is designed to mimic an actual hospital setting.

The University of Zululand’s Sports & Recreation Unit has well-utilized sport facilities by the University Students, the Municipality, Schools and Sporting organizations around Empangeni and Richards Bay. However, in the whole of the Zululand region, there is no synthetic Hockey facility despite the growing popularity of the sport in the region, preventing our students from progressing competitively at higher levels. An astro-turf hockey field will heighten competitiveness in the sport and benefit both students and community in a number of physical and social ways, creating a space for positive interaction outside of the academic sphere.  It is anticipated that many students, schools and community members will use these facilities. A vigorous effort is being made to solicit funds of approximately R7m for this exciting project.

Our singular aim is to make our own GUISET architecture capable of using the future Mobile Cloud to deliver services; such that GUISET services running on Mobile Devices take advantage of resources provided in ad hoc Mobile Cloud scenarios such as peer crowds found in villages,

Schools, campuses, hospitals etc. A recent seed-funded endeavour to develop a product called ‘GUISET derivative in your pocket’ has been launched. This is a product family that will use the ad hoc mobile cloud resources in future as a result of this research.

This Computer Science project foregrounds future generation technology for tactical communications systems. In the tactical environ1nent, communication requirements become more challenging. This environment is characterized by the lack of communication infrastructure. Operations are often limited by availability of power, weight, size, transmission range and bandwidth of the communication system. Technology gains in these key areas will translate into tactical advantage. The project’s Expected Outputs include the following: Securing Communicati ons Technology; Improving Data Communicati ons and Networking Technology; Cognitive and Software Defined Radio; Energy Efficient Communication Protocols; Antenna, RF and Modulation Technologies and Video Bandwidth Reduction Techniques. Valuable postgraduate research emanates from this project, which is currently funded in part by Telkom, Armscor and Huawei, with training input from Dynatech. However, an urgent appeal is being made for sponsorships and bursaries for LOCAL Honours students, whose financial neediness prevents them from continuing with studies in this field. Any gift will be deeply appreciated, and recipients will be available for work-in-learning programmes thereafter.

UNIZULU intends building a new potable water treatment plant to alleviate the problems associated with the inconsistent water supply it currently obtains. It seeks to construct the new plant within the campus boundary with the raw water draw-off being made at the adjacent Lake Mangezi.  The University will benefit greatly by having its own potable water purification plant in order to overcome any irregular water supply problems. These problems are normally the result of the frequent load shedding that Eskom has to deal with. All facilities on the campus are then severely affected and certain operations within the teaching and learning areas are hampered by the non-availability of potable water.  During times of water outages, the auxiliary plant and equipment on campus is either damaged or made inoperable.  The catering facilities are negatively affected and students are further placed at a huge disadvantage when food production is affected.  The health and safety risk is aggravated in the residential facilities due to inadequate water for toilets, bathing and cleaning.  All of these critical concerns will be addressed once an efficient supply of water is provided. The local surrounding rural community will also benefit greatly from the new plant. An estimate of R35m is required.

There is a great need for the introduction of Maritime Programmes at UNIZULU, that it will generate economic growth, open up opportunities for students and invite scholarship and research, and that the Richards bay campus is ideally located for such a venture.The University makes a strong case that the Campus is in the heart of one of the fastest growing provincial economies growing at an average rate of 4.3% per year, and that these programmes will be in strong demand, along with the Engineering disciplines envisaged, and will resonate with one of the main economic activities in the region.

Investing in Young Entrepreneurial Minds (IYEM)

IYEM is aimed at transferring relevant entrepreneurial skills to the youth i.e. pupils, students and the youth around campus and in surrounding areas of Empangeni and Richards Bay which will aid them in being relevant for the future of this ever-changing world. This is done by a way of capacitating, informing and transferring relevant entrepreneurial skills to the youth resulting to financial independence.Young people are also given resources to start and manage their own ‘student co-operatives’ affording them an opportunity of working with other young ones. This not only improves their business skills but also promote social cohesion. We are encouraging them to partner with their community in various ways.

Instilling the culture of entrepreneurship at grass-root level and improving financial management skills is core in this project. With the creativity and innovation that young people posses creating a suitable business model becomes an exciting task. Currently IYEM exists in 10 high schools attracting over 500 learners, other schools are still being recruited into the programme.

The University of Zululand is home to approximately 17 000 students, 8000 of whom are in such extreme financial difficulties, that they go hungry – daily. As a society aware of the need to develop our youth for their roles tomorrow, within the context of a vibrant nation and continent, it is untenable that we allow this sad state to persist. Our conscience cannot allow it. If we intend to create the conditions for academic success at an institution for higher learning, it is our responsibility to create an enabling environment, including the provision of basic needs such as food security. The repercussions of not acting today, are dire, for all of us.

The UNIZULU Foundation as well as the Quality Enhancement Office is intent on doing the right thing, to ensure that we do not have students with empty stomachs tackling the academic challenge. While the UNIZULU Foundation has supported students at UNIZULU since 1982, and will continue to do so, it proposes here a Meal-a-Day Project for our future leaders, and urges you to strongly to partner with us in CARING.

Any form of participation, whether monetary, in kind, or in service, will be valued, with due recognition.

Our current budget: R6.75m pa. We will, however, start small. As we garner more resources and participation from the donor community, the project will grow and address the needs of a larger group of students.

The University of Zululand (UNIZULU) is committed to principles of equity and access, and seeks to provide quality education for all students, including students with disabilities. It is therefore taking active steps to address the barriers to access and learning for people with disabilities. UNIZULU has introduced a Disabled Students Programme to address the academic and accessibility needs of persons with special needs.

Currently there is NOTHING major available at UNIZULU to assist blind and visually impaired students, except magnifiers on computers. At our university there is nothing specially printed for our Visually Challenged Students. There are also no Computer Laboratories with Assistive Technology. As indicated, while the Disability Unit is being established, we do not have any adaptive devices, such as Screen Reading Software, Magnification Software, OCR Scanning Software and Voice Recognition Software. Printers available for both ordinary print and for braille, would be very useful.For Deaf and Hard of Hearing Students, no Sign Language Interpreters are available, nor part-time staff. We are aware of the need for the Loop Systems for use by Severely Hard Of Hearing Students  (including Batteries and Lapel Microphones), which enhance sound for students using hearing aids. These would be invaluable and would allow us to also recruit students in the future, and are hence recommended

The UZWS will support young learners from township and rural schools in their struggle to pass the final Senior Certificate examination and the need for it is as urgent now as it was when the programme started in 1997.  Many township and rural schools are still under-resourced and overcrowded and the teachers working in them over-burdened and often inadequately trained. The UZ Winter School will run for two weeks and provide supplementary tuition in key subjects during the July vacation to Grade 12 learners from historically disadvantaged schools in the KZN. The event is held at the University of Zululand (Unizulu) campus.

Apart from providing extra academic support, the Winter School also gives learners a taste of what it would be like to study at a higher education institution. It motivates them to strive for success in the fast approaching final examination and inspires them to aim for further study. In addition, learners will be given Life Orientation and career guidance instruction. Learners will also be introduced to ICT.

Contact Us

The UNIZULU Foundation is housed on the Main Campus of the University of Zululand, from where its operations emanate. It has an office in Gauteng as well. See contact details below.

Main Campus: 035 902 6245/6125

The Foundation’s main office is now located at Foundation House, 12 Thandanani Complex, Mvuzemvuze Rd,  Main Campus, University of Zululand