Child minders win big

2017-02-23 06:00
Ardiel Soeker (NDA Westen Cape provincial manager), Nozipho Ralarala, Thembakazi Nxesi (Best Non-Centre Based Priogramme winner) Care Blaauw (Best ECD Centre winner) and Dr Anthony Bouwer (NDA Acting chief operations officer).

Ardiel Soeker (NDA Westen Cape provincial manager), Nozipho Ralarala, Thembakazi Nxesi (Best Non-Centre Based Priogramme winner) Care Blaauw (Best ECD Centre winner) and Dr Anthony Bouwer (NDA Acting chief operations officer).

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Two localEarly Childhood Development workers have upped the ante for Khayelitsha and Mfuleni by winning awards in a Provincial Awards ceremony for such centres.

Nozipho Ralarala of Blooming Stars Educare Centre in Mfuleni walked away with Best Practitioner at Western Cape South African Early Childhood Development (SA ECD) Awards while the Emthonjeni Outreach Programme won in the Best Non-Centre Based Programme category.

The awards were hosted by the National Development Agency and its partners with 316 entrants for the three catergories: Best ECD Practitioner for the Year, Best ECD Non-Centre Based Programme and Best ECD Centre for the Year.

The best ECD went to White Dove ECD Centre of Velddrift with the winners set to compete at the national awards in Johannesburg next month.

Mfuleni’s proud representative Ralarala said that she was happy to be noticed for her hardwork.

She said she started working in ECDs in 2004 and said that she didn’t do anything special but by following instructions from workshops she attended, which were facilitated by the NDA and the Social Development Department.

“I’m really pleased that I have been noticed for the work that I have put in because when they were preparing for this, we were asked important questions about child development and there was a follow up to see if we really practiced what we said.

For them to choose me as the best person to implement them is the good news to me,” she said.

She explained that some of the key areas ECD practitioners focus on is the character building of children, teaching them problem solving as well as literacy and numeracy.

“We are not often regarded as professionals regardless of the fact that we are the foundation phase of child learning, so being recognized feels really good and the fact that Mfuleni is recognized for something positive is great,” she said.

She said that she was excited about going to Joburg for the national awards next month.

Dr Anthony Bouwer, NDA Chief Operations Officer, said the awards were part of the agency’s efforts to improve access and the quality of Early Childhood Development for all children, particularly those in remote and rural areas.

“While we have made notable progress in this regard, much more still needs to be done.

The NDA has further made remarkable contributions towards ECD infrastructure, training of practitioners and in other capacity building interventions.

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