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Umdoni Leadership Campus

Holistic Leadership Development Campus

Fighting to strengthen Families.

Our beloved Eswatini is in crisis! Already dubbed the “The fatherless nation”, the fight is on for the soul of a country. Like the rest of the world, the health of families determines the way we love, serve, behave, and build communities. The foundations of who we are as a person is formed in the developing years by family. The need to take the fight to impact Eswatini to the next level is crucial.

Strengthening families and equipping leaders of communities through practical trainings, innovation and appropriate technologies is the next step for holistic transformation. Take our hand in pioneering the fight for many nations that will be impacted by Umdoni.

Umdoni students serve in Africa

Leadership development without limits

The unique environment we’re pioneering at Umdoni encourages rapid self-development, critical thinking, resiliency, acceptance of others, family and community enrichment, and a low-waste mindest for business and daily living. We’re working to create holistic leaders that take these concepts back into the community and beyond Eswatini’s borders.

Interactive Development Map
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Maker Space
Skills Training

Maker Space

The maker space is the fabrication and construction skillset development center for the farm. Crucial building materials and assets (furniture, metal works, textiles) are created on-site instead of being imported. Students gain confidence and training in multiple disciplines reinforcing creative thinking and problem solving.
Gaining confidence

Year 2 Dorms

As students overcome the character-defining challenges of Year 1, they’re then exposed to a wide variety of trades and skillsets. As they learn life skills in plumbing, sewing, electrical, information technology, welding, and construction, they discover hidden talents and passions. They learn who they are and what they were made for.

Trial by fire

Year 1 Dorms

The basic Year 1 dorm environment plunges students into a rapid live-in education covering advanced sustainability topics including waste and sewage management, livestock care, recycling, water storage techniques, agriculture, and permaculture to survive. The daily practice of budgeting, auditing, and critical thinking is automatic through this intentionally restricted basic living experience.

Year 1 is our largest year as we merge Umdoni students with SLA shepherds training.

Gaining Mastery

Year 3 Dorms

As students graduate from Year 2, they’re able to identify their dreams and challenge themselves to dive deep into training and mastery. They further develop their expertise and practice community enrichment through training and mentoring other students on campus.

Water Tower

Our recently installed 86,000-liter water reservoir helps us supply fresh drinking water to all of the vital buildings and housing areas using gravity instead of pumps!

Water Features

Swales and Dams

A fresh water ecosystem or Aquaculture produces edible fish, natural duck/swan habitats, and rich soil components. Using swales (land depression channels), we can create slow moving water currents that use gravity to distribute nutrient dense compost, animal manure, or worm tea to plants throughout the farm. Ponds and swales are powerful natural alternatives for expensive fertilizers and irrigation systems.
guest house

Guest House

A future guest house will help us temporarily house guest teachers and volunteers to maximize the effectiveness of the farm’s programs and existing facilities. The guest house will also provide opportunities for students to learn and develop hospitality and business skillsets.
jars of produce

Craft and Produce Market

As our program continues to multiply, we’ll be able to bring fresh produce to market while providing an additional training ground for students to learn about finance, buisness, and customer service.
Serving the community

Restaurant and coffee shop

A future planned restaurant and coffee shop will help students interested in customer service and cooking to have an additional training ground to build and develop their skillsets. The food will be organic farm to table by design and will help further teach sustainability for students and visitors.

Abundant Farmlands

The majority of the campus will be used creatively for low-water-use, intercropped agriculture that is highly interactive with farm animals and food waste centers. The goal is to have an artificial ecosystem where each element (including buildings and fencing) positively interconnects together leading to a low cost to maintain yet highly yielding farm.

Recycling Center

One of the primary tenets of permaculture is “produce no waste”. Our recycling center helps our students find value in trash and sewage. Waste is sorted by best use: compost, worm food, animal feed, organic pesticide, container, or functional components. Several no-smell composting toilets throughut the campus even help transform human waste over time into safe-to-use garden compost without using any water at all.
Multiplying Our Growth

Plant Nursery

Our nursery helps us teach our students how to multiply and grow plants. Here we also experiment with differing mixures of custom potting soil and study the effects it has in plant development. We create and develop compost teas, manure mixtures, and new planting methods. We design, test, refine, and implement new techniques on a small scale before exporting to a larger scale elsewhere on the farm.

Campus Development phases

  • phase 1 land purchase

    Land Purchase

    Phase 1

    Umdoni’s land was purchased in 2018. We let the ground lay fallow for a year and welcomed our first students in 2020 during the start of the pandemic.

  • phase 2 water tower

    Water Tower and System

    Phase 2

    Our water tower and high-pressure water systems were successfully fundraised and installed in 2020/2021. Medium-pressure and low-pressure systems remain to be installed per site as needed.

    Mostly Complete
  • phase 3 guest housing

    Guest Housing

    Phase 3: Section 1

    Umdoni features several private guest houses for guests, trainers, and volunteers. In the future, there will be more additions so that Umdoni can house teams.

    40% Complete
  • phase 3 student housing

    Student Housing and Classrooms

    Phase 3: Section 2

    Students and chaperones will live in one of three dormitories with integrated classroom spaces. These spaces will be highly integrated with kitchen gardens and food forests so that students can be as self-sufficient as possible.

    In Planning Stage
  • phase 3 workshop

    Skillset Training Spaces

    Phase 3: Section 3

    We envision a multi-disciplinary workshop where students can learn sewing, electrical skills, woodworking, plumbing, welding, computing, and more. We’re calling the workshop “The Maker Space”

    In Planning Stage
  • phase 4 public spaces

    Business and Hospitality Centers

    Phase 4

    Business and hospitality centers function as areas to increase Umdoni’s ability to be sustainable while also providing a useful training ground for students and alumni.

    We expect to have a restaurant, coffee shop, handicraft station, and more in the future.

    In Planning Stage
  • vision whole life sustainability

    Long Term Vision

    We want to see Umdoni become an incubator of innovation to bring distributed change into our communities.

    We believe we’ll achieve that by helping our students achieve whole life sustainability and encourage innovative thinking to solve the complex problem of poverty.

    Through other programs, we’ll help strengthen families. We’ll equip leaders of communities through practical trainings, innovation and appropriate technologies is the next step for holistic transformation. Take our hand in pioneering the fight for many nations that will be impacted by Umdoni.

Umdoni Project Videos

Project VLOG Playlist

Special Videos Playlist