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Thulani Honored at CNN Heroes All Star Tribute

posted Feb 5, 2013, 8:59 AM by Peter Johannsen   [ updated Feb 5, 2013, 9:19 AM ]
On Sunday, December 2nd, during a live broadcast to millions around the world, our own Thulani Madondo was celebrated as one of this year’s top ten CNN heroes. It was a star-studded evening during which Thulani shared the stage with nine other exceptional individuals who have done so much for their own communities. While we are of course sad that he was not voted hero of the year, we could not be more grateful for the extraordinary support KYP and Thulani have received over the past couple of months because of this great honor. The entire experience has connected us with so many new friends in South Africa and around the world, and the support and encouragement we have received has been very motivational for all of us.

The evening was an extraordinary event. Over the last 9 weeks, the 10 heroes inspired over 5 million votes, and 6,000 people joined together at the Shrine Auditorium in Los Angeles to celebrate their work. Thulani was introduced by 50 Cent, and had the chance to share a few words with the audience:

“Every day at KYP, we feel so grateful to be able to help change the lives of hundreds of children living in Kliptown's shacks. Having grown up in Kliptown ourselves, we know the daily struggles. We know the challenges. For us, we have a saying: 'Pull up your own socks.' It is a privilege to teach that to the children, but an even greater gift to see them do it. Thank you.”

As one of this year’s top ten heroes, Thulani has received a $50,000 grant to help KYP continue the work of helping Kliptown’s children. In addition, the Annenberg Foundation is providing a customized version of the “Annenberg Alchemy” program, which gives advice to leaders on how to improve their organization’s fundraising, communications, management, and other critical elements of any thriving organization.

We are so grateful to have had Thulani honored in this way. The entire experience has been a great opportunity for all of us at KYP, as it has given us the chance to connect with so many people and let the world know about our dreams for Kliptown’s children. We were so inspired by the other CNN heroes, and congratulate Pushpa Basnet of Nepal, this year’s CNN Hero of the year. We want to thank everyone at CNN for giving us the opportunity to share KYP with the world!

You can still see CNN’s page about Thulani and KYP at the CNN Heroes site where there are videos, photos, stories, and how to support our programs.

December 2012