We are committed to the development of the whole child: Body, mind and spirit. In the words of Nelson Mandela, “Education is the most powerful weapon you can use to change the world” and we too believe that without access to a high quality education there can never be social upliftment. It is for this reason that we run an Early Childhood Development Centre (ECD) for 75 children between the ages of 3 and 6. The children in the ECD come from Shiyabazali and other impoverished communities in the Howick area. Their education is completely free, including the provision of health care, school uniforms, and nutritious daily meals. As part of our ECD programme we focus on the development of the following key skills: Language, cognitive and critical thinking, numeracy, motor skills improvement, and emotional strength. Other educational programs include a Bridging Class for 10 children who have never had access to schooling, and who receive individual instructions enabling them to enter mainstream schooling. We also offer an Aftercare Program for primary and high school children from indigent homes.
Our 3 pre-school teachers focus on early childhood development so that our children are fully prepared for Primary School. Our school provides a loving, caring place where children receive the mental, physical and spiritual stimulation that is essential for development of their young minds and bodies. In 2019 all grade R children progressed to quality primary schools. Of those 87% illustrated a level of school readiness on par or better than their peers.
Our bridging class caters for children 7 years and older that have never been to school. This class aims to provide learners with the basic educational tools required for them to later be included into main-stream educational institutions. During 2019, four of our bridging class children made such commendable academic progress that they are now in various grades at a quality mainstream school. Three children (from our first group of bridging class) completed mainstream primary school (grade 7) and are all now enrolled at high school.
Desmond Sokhela runs our sports program in the afternoons. At present the children are participating in the local leagues for netball and soccer. Desmond has led his teams to various victories and is incredibly dedicated and proud of his pupils.