We want to raise funds for a bursary in honour of our friend Melanie who passed away in 2011.
Picture a giant watermelon, vibrantly green and ripe and this image begins to encapsulate Melanie Winifred Ncube, or Melon Cube. Like any watermelon she was solid and capable of enduring hard knocks, which she did with grace. Like most fruits a few bruises only make the taste sweeter and the trial’s Mel experienced only made her more wise and gentle. Each setback made her better equipped to face new challenges with renewed energy and focus. It seems unlikely that a watermelon would apologise for being a watermelon…and in this vein Mel was uncompromisingly herself, her actions were full of integrity and if she no longer believed in what she did or said then she would move on, as it seemed as though she was unable to act without conviction. Mel was vocal in her beliefs and philosophies, she was a woman who stood up for what she believed in and if she met with an opposing philosophy then she was happy to debate the merits of each belief, while determinedly remaining steadfast in her world views. She rarely dismissed a thought or idea without engaging with it and teasing out its merits and flaws. She valued freedom of expression, independence and acceptance.
Like the subtle and soft taste of a watermelon Mel was kind and gentle. She was capable of making everyone in a room feel as though they were special and worth listening to. Above all she was intelligent, beautiful and quirky. The way in which she lived her life is an inspiration. She taught us to live without regrets and to pursue adventure relentlessly. She also taught us that we should not allow apparently external limitations to influence us, that we should be impulsive and willing to see what happens instead of being scared to act in case it was the wrong thing to do.
Each pip in a watermelon tells the story of that watermelon wanting to live for longer, to perpetuate itself and ensure that there are more watermelons to come.
The Melanie Ncube Scholarship/Bursary is one of those pips. As a group of friends who adored and admired Mel we wanted to ensure that her spirit lived on. Rhodes University solidified a lot of what Mel believed in and it was the place that brought us all together. So as a tribute to our Melon Cube this Trust was formed. It was an honour to have Mel as a sister and friend and we trust that this contribution to the tertiary education of some Rhodes students will ensure that more invaluable friends and experiences are forged. May this pip grow into a legacy of learning, fun and memories that last a lifetime.
To keep alive the memory and spirit of Melanie Winnifred Ncube through the annual provision of a bursary for one Rhodes University student. It is envisaged that the bursary will contribute meaningfully to the lives of the selected students and enable them to make the most of the opportunities afforded them during their time at the University. The Trust aims to ensure that the name of Melanie Ncube lives on in the spirit in which she lived her life – a spirit of enthusiasm, joy, honesty, warmth, spontaneity and kindness that forever touched the lives of all with whom she came into contact. Furthermore, the Trustees aim also to make a valuable contribution to society by helping to develop young people who embody these qualities that Melanie championed.
To annually raise funds for the purpose of increasing the money available for the award of the Melanie Ncube Bursary, and to provide support to the award holder(s) where possible.