“Kwakhanya” means moving from darkness into the light……such an appropriate name for Ikamva Labantu’s new Early Childhood Learning Centre in Khayelitsha which officially opened its doors on 20 April 2012.
The centre is a training and resource facility that aims to enhance the early childhood development (ECD) knowledge of parents, caregivers and ECD practitioners (teachers) so that they can deliver the best loving care and education to our pre-school children.
Kwakhanya comprises a range of facilities including Training Rooms; a Model Pre-school with up to six demonstration classrooms; a Parent Centre; Offices and Utilities (e.g. kitchen). The centre also has an indoor and outdoor play area.
In our Training Rooms, ECD practitioners will undergo accredited ECD training to enhance their knowledge and skills and build their classroom expertise. In addition, parents, caregivers and ECD practitioners will receive training from Ikamva Labantu staff and other partners on issues like children’s’ health, language and emotional development.
In our Model Pre-school, we have six classrooms for children from our local communities for the ages 0-2 years, 2-3 years and 3-5 years. The classrooms will provide these children with best practice, age appropriate, loving and stimulating education. The classes will also serve as an experiential training environment for teachers participating in the training programme, giving them a chance to put theoretical learning into practice.
The Parent Centre is a first of its kind. We recognise that real development can only happen when a child is well supported by its family. Here families, caregivers and practitioners will be able to access information, assistance, referrals and knowledge about good parenting from professionals such as psychologists, occupational therapists and speech therapists.
Kwakhanya Early Childhood Learning Centre will also provide a welcoming venue for meetings, interactions and discussions for members of the community.
Our children are precious. Getting the right start in life is as much about what children learn as about the caring and understanding of the families around them and the capacity of the teachers who guide them. We hope Kwakhanya will fulfill our dream to be a place where such care can be realised.
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