Lonwabo children having fun
2019 has been a year of change for parents and children in the Starting Chance Programme. This year parents from 9 different educares in the Mfuleni township in Cape Town had the opportunity to come to interactive workshops to learn about how they could make a difference to their child's educational journey. We have had more parents than ever before and the 4 workshops we ran in 2019 were well supported and parents were very happy for the opportunity to learn how they could help their child. In poverty stricken environments, it is easy to lose heart. But passion and determination can change mind sets and approaches towards what support means and how to implement it.
In 2020, we are excited to introduce new ideas and upskill parents and teachers across our schools. Our theme for 2020 is "Hope - our opportunity to change the future of our child." Hope is a rare commodity where there is violence, poor conditions, sadness and fear. But change can happen, one parent at a time. We will be focusing on our Lonwabo Special Care Centre and the building of a new school for 60 children who are differently abled. In township environments, these children are often called "the hidden children". They are tucked away in shacks as community members don't know how to interact with them. We hope to hold interactive parent workshops with specialists to help the parents learn how to feed their children properly, how to sit them in a way that stimulates muscle development, and then how to play with their children within the bounds of what they can manage. This will be a first for Mfuleni and parents are excited to be included in specially designed sessions for them. It gives them hope that they can support their differently abled child in a new and positive way.
In 2020 we will be developing our parent rep team and upskilling their capabilities so that they will have a meaningful role in planning and executing the workshops. The team consists of 9 teachers from across our 9 schools and they have indicated they are really excited about their chance to reach their parent body to form a partnership between the parents and the teachers for the overral better programme for the children. This gives the teachers hope that they can make a meaningful difference to help the parents develop their children at home and build on the work that is being done at school.
We will hold 4 workshops through the year - each workshop will focus on a key developmental area for the child at home. We know that to bridge the poverty divide we need our parents to stimulate, support and encourage their child at home and give them a different and better start than many of the parents had in their childhood. We look forward to an exciting year.
If you want to join the hopeful - please support this programme. We have the potential to reach over 1700 parents and their children but we need financial help to do it. Thank you for considering this project and to those who have supported already - thank you! Without you we would not be able to continue.
New Lonwabo school design
Hope for this child of the future
Parents and children learning new games