Improved centre promotes learning

2020-02-12 06:03
The Metsing Early Childhood Development Centre in Phase 10, Bloemfontein, opened a fully-fledged learning facility donated by the Airports Company South Africa (ACSA) on 30 January. From the left are, front: Kananelo Thabe (5), Rethabile Mokoena (4), Lethabo Mathokazi (4) and Alice Metsing (principal); back: Esmeralda Barnes (Bram Fischer Airport manager) and Isabella Sekawana (provincial chief director for the Department of Social Development). Photos: Mlungisi Louw

The Metsing Early Childhood Development Centre in Phase 10, Bloemfontein, opened a fully-fledged learning facility donated by the Airports Company South Africa (ACSA) on 30 January. From the left are, front: Kananelo Thabe (5), Rethabile Mokoena (4), Lethabo Mathokazi (4) and Alice Metsing (principal); back: Esmeralda Barnes (Bram Fischer Airport manager) and Isabella Sekawana (provincial chief director for the Department of Social Development). Photos: Mlungisi Louw

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The Metsing Early Childhood Development (ECD) Centre in Phase 10, Bloemfontein, is bursting with pride after receiving the donation of a fully-equipped building.

It replaces an inadequate structure made from corrugated iron sheets.

The three-roomed facility, worth R2 500 000, was donated by the Airports Company South Africa (ACSA). It was handed over on 30 January.

Refentse Shinners, executive for corporate affairs at ACSA, said the donation was part of the company’s socio-economic development initiative to promote social cohesion and transformation through education programmes.

The initiative focuses on teacher and learner development, as well as infrastructure support for disadvantaged communities.

The facility has three fully-equipped classrooms, a principal’s office and a kitchen, along with additional ablutions for learners and adults. In addition, the company donated furniture, appliances and learning material such as books and toys.

The centre now meets safety requirements listed by the Department of Social Development for ECD centres.

It is envisaged that the centre will go far in improving the educational outcomes for ECD learners.

The centre is one of the projects meant to better the lives of residents, who are faced with unemployment.

“We are honoured as ACSA to contribute to making a difference in the lives of children in disadvantaged communities by ensuring that they have safe facilities and the support they need to reach their full potential,” said Shinners.

According to Shinners, the centre would impact positively on the readiness of learners for primary school.

“We hope to contribute not only to improved learning conditions, but children who are better prepared for primary school.”

The day care facility is the brainchild of Alice Metsing, a former teacher at the Matla Primary School in Bloemfontein.

She also has a Level 4 qualification in ECD and a paramedic qualification.

Metsing said at least seven people were employed by the facility: three teachers, with N4, N6 and Level 1 teaching qualifications, a chef, a cleaner, a security guard and a handyman for maintenance.

Metsing said 72 children, up until the age of five, were registered.

She started the centre in 2015 with no financial support.

“I saw a great need for such a facility for good care, education and development of children, as well to benefit the society,” said Metsing.

“I’m grateful for the valuable support from the donor, helping realise the dream of a decent facility,”

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