March 08, 2017
Thandi Tutu-Gxashe, the founder of Tutudesks and Desmond Tutu’s eldest daughter, will give an inspirational speech at LIWA AFRICA on March 18th.  Tutu-Gxashe’s passion for education led her to develop a simple hand-held “Tutudesk,” which allows children in Africa to learn to read anywhere.  Her social innovation is both low cost and effective, providing children with a sense of pride and responsibility.  Because the desk provides no value to anyone but the children, it is not at threat of being sold on the black market, a concern of introducing new technology to a poverty-stricken society. 

“I was a barefoot township urchin.  I went to school where there were no desks.  We sat on benches and when the teacher asked us to write, we knelt down on the floor and used the benches we had been sitting on as desks,” says South African social rights activist and Nobel Peace Prize recipient Desmond Tutu.

Tutu-Gxashe will be the keynote speaker at LIWA AFRICA, a gala sharing African culture, on Saturday, March 18th, 7:00 p.m. at the Greenville Marriott.  LIWA AFRICA will honor Dr. Thomas Mensah, a Ghanaian born chemical engineer and inventor.  Entertainment includes a special performance from Umdabu South African Dance Company as well as South African actress Odette Henderson as mistress of ceremonies, food, fashion show, DJ and dancing.  Tickets are $40 and may be ordered online at  For more information, please call 864-228-7091.

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