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SOS Africa, Grabouw
01 Sep 2013
SOS Africa's Western Cape sponsorship scheme started in 2013 to fund the education and care of children from the Pineview Township in Grabouw. Thanks to the invaluable support of sponsors around the world, within two years SOS Africa's Grabouw Education Programme grew to empower the lives of 19 children from the Pineview area.
Pineview Background Information
There is an estimated 60,000 people living in the Pineview Community. Work is seasonal as most employment is found on the surrounding fruit farms. A significant challenge in the area is the high seasonality and the resultant poverty-related issues that this presents. During the fruit picking season, there is a shortage of labour but for the remaining 8 months of the year, unemployment is stated as being between 60 and 70 percent. The impact of this on the community is significant.
The issues stemming from seasonality affect the community from the clinical and physical medical perspective; where the off season sees an increase in domestic and community violence as well as child abuse and other such issues, during “the season” children generally return to empty homes without any parental support and are at their most vulnerable.
SOS Africa Grabouw Education Programme
SOS Africa has teamed up with an organisation called ‘Agape’ that has been working in the Pineview community for over 20 years. They have established a number of pre-primary nursery schools in the area focusing on preparing children for school. With the help of Agape, SOS Africa identifies a number of children from disadvantaged families who have attended the Agape nursery school and have shown a keen interest and a natural ability to learn.
In Pineview, most children have nowhere to go to when school finishes in the early afternoon. This is a dangerous time when children are at their most vulnerable in the townships and are preyed on by gangs. The children therefore attend SOS Africa's Aftercare Centre on a daily basis where they receive extra tuition, homework assistance, mentor support and nourishment. Most importantly it provides them with a safe and friendly environment within which they can learn and grow.
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