Prochorus August 2014 Newsletter
Crèches and training
We now have two separate groups training with Denise which has meant our principals who have applied the basic training are receiving more advanced training.
Denise is training principals and teachers from thirty local crèches and we have seen a huge improvement in the quality of the care taking place in these learning facilities.
We put up one new crèche building with the help of loyal donors as well as moved one of our existing buildings to a new site.
The playgroups are for children whose parents are unemployed and unable to provide them with any pre-school education. We have four fantastic teachers who provide a safe and warm learning environment for these vulnerable children.
We were recently featured in the local gazette news and the classes are now fully booked for the next few courses with people wanting to improve or learn basic computer skills. Unfortunately our computers are getting very old and need replacing. If anyone has a computer which is less than three years old, please donate it to this very worthy project.
Unakho – crèche for differently abled children
Our crèche looks wonderful. Thanks to the generosity of the Goodwill foundation, we were able to fix the drainage system and replace a wall, ceiling boards and part of the floor. A wonderful group of Wilgenhof and Heemstede students from the University of Stellenbosch put up a new fence on two sides of the property. This will help Cynthia as one of our new little boys was quite adventurous and the fence will ensure his safety.
We are always blessed by the difference our volunteers make in our organisation. We love their energy and commitment. Our four Dutch girls from Fontys University worked with two of the crèches and made a profound difference. Miriam from Germany served us for 9 months. We also appreciate all our local volunteers whether they serve our community for a few days or months. The Maties MGD project (University of Stellenbosch community project) always delights our children and this year they have worked with Grade 6 pupils from both of the local schools.
It has been a real exciting year for us thus far. In February we had a wonderful men’s camp in Wolseley with around 900 other men. We took the high school kids on a camp in the Cederberg at Matjiesrivier in partnership with the Cape Leopard Trust.
The Argus mountain bike and road races were both attended in March. In April we did the Western Province Cross Country race hosted at Paul Roos.
The boys are very excited to be able to race with a very good 29er carbon mountain bike that we managed to build. We would love to have one or two more such bikes to accommodate all the developing and promising talent on our programme.
The start of 2014 has been great with a lot of activities. We have practice three times per week and we can see an enormous improvement in skills and self confidence.
We form part of the Trinity Club in Stellenbosch and we have practice with them every second Wednesday evening. We also play netball matches every second week as part of the Boland Netball League.
We started a Monday night small group with all high school girls on “Identity” . We are really excited to see how this group will impact these young women.
Two great employees were appointed to run the centre as teachers. They are doing a great job and we can see a definite improvement in their academic performance. On an average day there are between 20 – 30 children attending.
The children get a lunch packet before class every day and volunteers assist them with their homework and school projects. Life-skill lessons are also taught on a weekly basis.
Isipho se nkosi (Sewing group)
Isiphose Nkosi is now officially a start-up business. From pieces of scrap material to an order of 2000 scarves.
Florence and Sylvia were asked to make 2000 scarves for Awaken 2014. (Stellenbosch, Johannesburg and Namibia). The ladies were invited to attend Awaken 2014 in Stellenbosch. When the delegates received their gift, they were elated. The standing ovation they got was such a humbling experience.
For any sewing needs: e.g. scarfs, knitting, alterations to clothing, table runners, curtains, aprons, cushions, bedding etc. Please contact: firstname.lastname@example.org
The playgroup in Cloetesville has been such a success that we are duplicating this project next month. We already have a long waiting list of children who want to be part of Little Builders. Our teachers Lorraine and Maralisa are very committed to the children in their care. Despite working in an environment which is volatile due to alcohol and drug abuse, violence and poverty they manage to create a place of safety and peace for the children.
The creche has continued to grow succesfully since Secure Data erected two wooden structures as permanent homes for the expanding crèche in 2013. It caters for up to 25 children between the ages of 4 months and 6 years, on a daily basis with two full-time teachers looking after them from 7am to 6pm.
Bester Feed & Grain have recently allocated funds to paint the outside of the crèches with Biblical scenes. They are also equipping both the crèche structures with solid concrete floors, painted inside walls, insulated ceilings, shelving for the educational toys, posters on all walls, desk and chairs for the teachers, mattresses for nap-times and cutlery and crockery for lunch-time.
The Franschhoek Prochorus office has had a busy quarter, with the needs of the local Early Childhood Development (ECD) Centres, their children and a number of fire-affected shack-dwellers taking centre stage.
Along with our ongoing ECD feeding and learning programme support initiatives, we were called on to help with the handing out of fire extinguishers in each of the ECD Centres currently awaiting registration. We also distributed close to 100 blankets to the centres, to ensure that every child gets to enjoy a cosy nap in the afternoons.