When you look at all of the problems in the world it can be a little bit overwhelming. That is why Jacob Lief founded the Ubuntu Education Fund. He couldn’t change the whole world, but he could make a difference for a small part of it. The Ubuntu Education Fund, which features high end benefactor Andrew Rolfe on the board, has been focused on providing education to impoverished and at risk children living in the townships of Port Elizabeth in South Africa. The goal of the fund is to give these children a second chance at life so that they can better themselves. However, things haven’t always been easy.
Jacob Lief is as caring of a philanthropist as you can get so when he realized that his non profit wasn’t working as effective as he would like, well, changes were bound to be coming. While speaking at the World Economic Forum it was Jacob Lief who realized that things weren’t working smoothly. His non profit was raising copious amounts of money but the cash itself wasn’t making it to the right places, lives weren’t being changed, and children weren’t being helped. Lief says, “It was nonsense. The money was flowing in but we weren’t changing people’s lives.”
So Andrew Rolfe and the rest of the board at the Ubuntu Fund teamed up with Jacob Lief in order to usher in some greater changes. The goal was to get money coming in that wasn’t beholden by restrictions and earmarks. They wanted to divest benefactors from being so hands on in the process. Lief says, “We now go for high net-worth individuals or family foundations who understand that highly restricted funding isn’t worth our time.” By focusing solely on these high end benefactors the Ubuntu Fund is able to get people that are willing to be more hands off in the process.
Andrew Rolfe and the rest of the board had to weather the storm when transitioning to this new Ubuntu Model. Though donations slowed down a little bit, Andrew Rolfe is happy to say that they are more efficient and capable of helping people than ever.