Crèche for 120 children coming

2015-08-04 06:00

A partnership between the council and community organisations has resulted in the creation of an early childhood development centre in Masiphumelele.

The crèche will have a local business owner running the centre.

Masicorp was asked to facilitate the introduction of a pre-school on the site by the City of Cape Town, but because it did not have the resources to do so at that time, the Rotary Club of Newlands stepped in with funds raised, says Masicorp CEO Andrew Smith.

“The Club successfully applied for the necessary building approvals and has responsibility for the building project, which recently commenced with the laying of foundations. The new pre-school will provide a place for 120 children and is expected to open in January next year,” he says.

Masiphumelele is classified as one of the most vulnerable communities on the socio-economic status index and the construction of these facilities will provide accessible early childhood development services in an area where there is a very great need, explains Suzette Little, mayoral committee member for social development and early childhood development.

Vulnerable childrenSmith says: “We estimate there are over 4000 children in Masiphumelele between the ages of one and six. It is well-known that this age group is the most important stage for a child’s development but less than half of these children have a place at a registered pre-school. There is nothing more important than the education and welfare of young children.”

The centre will have four classrooms with modern facilities like a kitchen, bathrooms and office, Smith says. The project will cost about R3.5m.

The facilities are being built by private donors but will become City of Cape Town property after completion, Little explains.

“Similar private/public partnerships have resulted in the construction of early childhood development facilities in Fisantekraal and Mfuleni,” she says.

The new pre-school will be operated by Rainbow Crèche, which will relocate from an informal structure in Masiphumelele, Smith says.

“The 62 children currently at Rainbow and their parents are very pleased and excited at the prospect of having a proper brick-built school and all the facilities that it will provide. Rainbow’s school governing body will, as soon as an opening date can be confirmed, open its doors for other children to enrol,” he says.

Local operatorRainbow will be responsible for the day-to-day running and management of the centre, in line with the regulations related to early childhood development centres, Little says.

The facilities will be in line with national early childhood development norms and standards and will be modelled on other City-owned “centres of excellence”, Little says.

“It is important that the facilities are more than just early childhood development centres, but also places that will facilitate general community development,” she says

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