Stories worth sharing.

  • 30 Dec 2015 8:57 PM | Dhruti Dheda (Administrator)


    Hi EWB’ers! As the year draws to a close, the importance for reflection and all lessons learned becomes an integral part for the preparation for a 2016 with greater achievements! 2015 proved both successful and significant for the EWB-SA initiative, which could not have been achieved without our team on the ground and the support of our sponsors and members. THANK YOU!

    Quick Re-cap on 2015

    EWB-SA has expanded to over 1500 members in 2015, and are still growing! We are excited about those who have signed up and look forward to continuing to empower engineers to empower communities!

    8 student chapters at tertiary institutions exist to date, with our first university of technology chapter – EWB-TUT – being on the cards for 2016! We couldn’t be more thrilled about students grabbing the opportunity to engage with professionals whilst making a difference in South Africa’s rural and local communities. Explore our website to see what our communities have been up to.


    We launched our 1st EWB-SA Empowering Communities through Engineering Excellence Award to recognise and award the hard work that our volunteers put into making their projects happen. A huge congratulation to theKutumela Molefi Project team from EWB-UP for winning the award. We look forward to the competition and entrants next year!  Check out one of the 8 sub-projects of the winning community project here.

    AGM 2015

    We celebrated the closing of this year with our Annual General Meeting, held at the OPEN in the Maboneng Precinct, Johannesburg. The colourful evening brought our student leadership, professional members and guests together to reflect on a year of change. Thank you to everybody who came out and mingled, it was a superb evening.


    The AGM was just the beginning to the bigger and better 4th Annual Leadership Summit. Past and present chapter committees got to learn from each other and explore how to reach their potential as young leaders while continuing to build the significance of EWB-SA’s vision and mission – and enjoy the beautiful Magaliesburg!



    From the Africities Summit, where we co-hosted a session on Africa’s Infrastructure Build Programme with the Infrastructure Dialogues, to our participation in the Sustainability in the Resources Industry Summit, African Utility Week, and the Symposium for Engineering Education, 2015 has been a busy year with new ground covered by both EWB-SA and our student chapters.


    Our 2015 successes could not have been possible without the EWB-SA team and our sponsors and donors: WSP Parsen-Brinkerhoff, MottMacDonald, #cocreateSA and the Alcoa Foundation. We are grateful for your ongoing support.

    We will fly to new heights with EWB-SA in 2016. See you there!

    From the EWB-SA team

  • 26 Nov 2015 2:25 PM | Anonymous

    Find us at Africities-Africités on Monday, where we’ll be hosting a joint session with the Infrastructure Dialogues framed around:

    “Africa’s Infrastructure Build Programme – making a better life for Africa’s city residents.”

     We are excited to be part of the conversation around shaping the future of Africa with the people: Africa’s Local Government contribution to the Africa Vision 2063. Luba Luyaba will be presenting a youth perspective on how to shape the future of cities. This is a big step forward towards raising the voice of young engineers in conversations that matter.

  • 09 Nov 2015 9:00 PM | Dhruti Dheda (Administrator)

    Cape Townians – this one’s for you! South Africa’s first engineering hackathon is happening from 20 – 22 November at 75 Harringon Street. Sign up essential as space is limited to 12 participants only.
    Get involved and help us empower communities!

    NUNU Hack 1 Poster

  • 21 Sep 2015 9:02 PM | Dhruti Dheda (Administrator)

    Empowering Communities through Engineering Excellence Award

    All chapter volunteers, listen up! Here’s your chance to win R5000. Tell us how your 2015 project empowers a community through engineering excellence and stand a chance to celebrate your year’s hard work with a cash prize for you and your team!

    Application Requirements:

    • Applications must be in the form of a video or an e-poster or both.
    • The video must not be shorter than 1 minute or longer than 3 minutes.
    • The e-poster should not be text-heavy. Try to add photographs or quotes from the team and the community.

    Try to answer all these questions in your video or e-poster:

    1. What problem did you aim to solve?
    2. Describe how you arrived at your solution.
    3. How will your solution impact and empower the community?
    4. How have you worked as a team during this project?
    5. What did you do to build a relationship with the community you worked in?
    6. How have you transferred engineering knowledge?

    Remember, it is not the biggest budget, the most work, the greatest glam that counts, but who has built a relationship with the community, identified their needs, co-created a solution and will leave a sustainable impact.

    We are looking forward to your entries. Winners will be announced at the opening event of EWB-SA’s Student Leadership Summit on the 27th of November.

  • 03 Aug 2015 9:05 PM | Dhruti Dheda (Administrator)


    Article contributed by Jennifer Robertson from Mott MacDonald

    From the 29th June to 17th July 2015 a team of four University of Cape Town students from EWB-SA were hosted at the Mott MacDonald Cape Town office. The students are part of a team that is designing a skate park in Langa. Mott MacDonald provided office space, equipment and mentoring to the students.

    The project is currently in the feasibility stage and students spent most of their time developing a proposal, doing stakeholder engagement and deciding on material for the skate park. One of the major breakthroughs in the project was identifying a suitable site for the Skate Park.

    The Mott MacDonald partnership with EWB has helped the students by giving them a space to get together and focus on the project. We also helped them meet up with people in the City of Cape Town Parks Department. In addition the three weeks gave them an insight into the various Civil Engineering disciplines and what office life was like. Feedback from the students and EWB was very positive who were very grateful for the time and energy that various staff members gave them.

    Mott MacDonald is hoping to continue our involvement in the skate park project with EWB so there will be more news to follow.

    Thanks to the Cape Town staff who all made an effort to make the students feel welcome.

  • 01 Jul 2015 9:11 PM | Dhruti Dheda (Administrator)


    Another successful Wiki Night went down on 21 July, bringing together engineering pros and students from different corners of Gauteng to ponder questions that matter. Thanks to WSP I Parsons Brinckerhoff in Africa for hosting us in their i-Design space.

    Here a summary why we hosted a session on this topic:

    We believe that engineers hold great potential to create things of value. Who better than us to thus lead the entrepreneurial revolution in Africa? EWB-SA wants to help create an idea generation and business creation space in which opportunities are shared, ideas multiplied, creativity unleashed and where value trumps. To do this, we need your input to hear what you want and how we can get there together. It all starts with a first step. So let’s get walking.

    Watch this space for continuing conversations around entrepreneurship and intrapreneurship in engineering.

    Read more about Wiki Nights here.

  • 15 Jun 2015 9:13 PM | Dhruti Dheda (Administrator)

    EECE Award announcement 1

    At the heart or EWB-SA lies ourcommunity of passionate and driven engineers. We are proud of the commitment and hours of planning, designing and execution that you put into over 20 community development projects across South Africa every year. That’s why we have decided to up the challenge to encourage you to plan better, engage more effectively and deliver solutions that have an impact. Today we are launching the Empowering Communities through Engineering Excellence Award to emphasise EWB-SA’s commitment to fostering engineering thinking that benefits society. The Award is a R5 000,00 cash prize that will be awarded to the team members of the EWB-SA Chapter project that best embodies the design principles set out in our Project LifeCycle Process (select link to Guidelines and Templates).

    Remember your Project Roots – the reason WHY you embarked on an EWB project – and #BeYourLegend

  • 25 May 2015 9:15 PM | Dhruti Dheda (Administrator)

    The Alcoa Foundation announced this month that EWB-SA was selected alongside 12 other Engineers Without Borders International affiliates to receive grant funding as part of the Creation of a Global Engineer Program. The program is designed to create and replicate the best practices of  “learning through service programs” that develop skills in leadership, project management, communication, systems thinking and community and personal engagement.

    EWB-SA will utilise the funding to develop their Project Roots community of practice. Project Roots takes EWB-SA members back to the fundamentals of planning and executing successful development projects. The grant funding will subsidise the development of an online library of project resources and forum through which members can communicate and collaborate on projects nationally.  This will serve as a virtual extension to the current Mentorship programme, Project Life Cycle workshops and Human Centred Design Courses within the ‘Transferring Engineering Knowledge’ focus area.

    Running a successful development project requires introspection and collaboration says Matt Docherty, EWB-SA’s Head of Projects. It’s a journey in which you go from exploring what motivates you, to what motivates your team, to what motivates your community and sponsors. For EWB-SA our greatest achievement lies in enabling student engineers achieve this realisation and to carry it with them into the workplace. The objective of Project Roots is to facilitate this process by ensuring that projects run smoothly and that learnings are remembered and shared.

    “For EWB-SA receiving the grant from the Alcoa Foundation presents a tremendous opportunity to start documenting the collective experience of the EWB-SA community. Over the past 5 years EWB-SA members have planned and implemented over 30 engineering-related community development projects across South Africa. To deepen our understanding of the work we do we need to improve our knowledge sharing and training practices. Project Roots will be the first open online platform in South Africa that shares best approaches, learnings and failures of engineering practices in a local development context.” – Wiebke Toussaint, Chief Initiator of EWB-SA.

    If you are interested to work with EWB-SA on developing Project Roots as the online go-to place for Global Engineering resources in Africa and share how you would like to contribute.

  • 29 Apr 2015 9:16 PM | Dhruti Dheda (Administrator)

    Facebook flyer

    The air we breathe, the water we drink, the power that lights our homes and drives our gadgets – without the driving force of engineers across our continent life would be unimaginably different. To connect the minds behind the scenes, Africa’s leading water and power expo is coming to Cape Town from 12 – 14 May 2015.

    EWB-SA is partnering with African Utilities Week to enable our Western Cape student membership to participate in pertinent industry discussions and increase their awareness around utilities in Africa. We see access to power and water as fundamental cornerstones to development in Africa. As engineers this is the space where we can make a difference.

    Think Utility and be part of the conversation around water and power in Africa. AUW2015 is just 2 weeks away. Register now for your free expo pass .

  • 26 Feb 2015 9:20 PM | Dhruti Dheda (Administrator)

    A course by +Acumen and The Ariel Group

    “Storytelling for Change will help you better connect with your audience, whether in a meeting with one person or in a presentation to hundreds of people.”

    Dates: Mondays, from 09 March till 27 April

    Time: 18h30 – 20h30

    Venue: The Solution Space @UCT Graduate School of Business

    Course fee: Free!

    Register here:

    Contact Naeema Hoosain for more information


Empowering Engineers to Empower Communities

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