Lillies gets to stay

2015-05-05 06:00

The successful application for the renewal of its rental lease has been greatly welcomed by the Little Lillies crèche community.

The three-year lease of the Manenberg facility is currently being processed.

According to Suzette Little, the City’s Mayoral Committee Member for Social Development and Early Childhood Development, the City focuses greatly on the development of children.

She says the role of Early Childhood Development Centres (ECDs) are to “assist and ensure better care and protection of children”.

“They also provide an opportunity for development of children through a structured early learning programme, which lays a foundation for life-learning.”

According to pastor Winston Fouten, the Little Lillies Educare Centre is part of the Lillies Ministries NPO. His wife, Margaret, is the principal at the crèche.

He says they are grateful for the City’s support and partnership to deliver a service in early childhood development education to the community of Manenberg.

“There is a great demand for early childhood education in our community, thus our numbers have grown tremendously over the years.

We now care for 115 children daily.”

Little says the City’s ECD programme offers a “basket of services” to ECD centres.

These include assisting with registration, training with ECD practitioners, caregivers and parents, and they help to establish ECD forums centre governing bodies by conducting regular surveys and audits on registered and unregistered crèches. They also help with constructing and maintaining City-owned ECD centres, contribute towards ECD curriculum development by offering accredited qualifications, assist non-compliant ECDs and act against continuous non-compliance. They further support ECDs with resources such as learning materials, first-aid kits and fire safety equipment.

JP Smith, Mayoral Committee Member for Safety and Security, says in terms of gang violence in Manenberg, the primary role of the police is to ensure public safety. “The City does, however, play a supporting role as has been seen in its extended deployment of Metro Police and Law Enforcement officers, specifically to safeguard children in Manenberg,” he says.

Smith also refers to a statement issued early this year whereby the City’s safety and security directorate has maintained an increased presence in Manenberg since a flare-up in gang violence in mid-December.

It states that the focus has since moved to ensuring the safety of pupils in the area.

Little says they have also secured the Little Lillies educare centre and enclosed it to ensure that criminals do not enter the facility.

“Since we put the security measures in place, there has been a marked reduction in the number of attempted burglaries. The community has also been taking ownership of the facilities in the area that have enhanced their quality of life. We call upon the local community to please do their bit to safeguard the facility by keeping a watchful eye and report any criminal activity to the police,” she says.

Fouten adds they greatly value the subsidy, assistance and upgrades by the City, “as we strive to provide a safe and secure learning environment for the children”

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