“Shack to Chic” programme

The Trust has been in partnership with Starting Chance since 2013. Financial support is channelled into their shack-to-chic project (infrastructure builds and renovations of ECD centres) and the computer/tablet training project (teachers, Grade Rs and parents).
To date, five additional newly renovated ECD centres have been completed and handed over to the beneficiaries. These include Sakhuluntu, Ikusasalethu, Blooming Stars, Little Stars and Emmanuel. These ECD centres accommodate between 55 to 200 learners up to 6 years of age.

The computer training programme is run on tablets and computers donated by the Trust. The tablet training programme focusses on the Grade R’s and is instrumental in helping the learners grasp formative concepts in maths and literacy and the computer training focusses on the skills development of the teachers, principals and parents of these centres. 180 Grade R learners receive tablet training annually and to date , the tablet training programme has upskilled over 750 Grade R’s.

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The Trust’s financial support has enabled the development of six ECD centres, the introduction of computer training at these schools, offering practical skills workshops to over 50 schools in Mfuleni and, most importantly, financially supporting a full-time field worker who has assisted the schools to become best practice through her mentoring, role playing and support. This programme has positively impacted over 150 teachers, 2 000 children and the broader local community.

Commenting on the partnership with the HomeChoice Development Trust, Ali Corbett – founder and board member of Starting Chance said, “The HomeChoice Development Trust has been instrumental in helping us create a footprint in the Mfuleni community. With their financial support, together we annually improve the lives of the teachers and learners in Mfuleni through practical skills transfer workshops, introduction of technology and physical make overs of shack schools.

It is a privilege to work with a partner who shares in our vision. The HomeChoice Development Trust team don’t just administer funds, they actively encourage and support us in the field by sharing their knowledge and expertise to help us improve what we do. Our principals, the greater Mfuleni community together with the parents of the children are grateful for the opportunity to educate children in well-equipped facilities.”

This is what our beneficiaries have to say:

Upon receiving the new centre, Principal Elizabeth Tyilana said, “It’s a pleasure to move into the new school. I can’t hide my tears of joy. I have been waiting for such a long time. Thank you HomeChoice.”

Elizabeth – Emmanuel principal

Princess Mapatalala, Principal at the newly renovated Ikusasalethu ECD centre commented, “The funding from HomeChoice opened the door for me to register the school as an ECD centre. The kids now have enough space to move freely and the teachers are able to plan age-appropriate activities.
My centre now has enough resources to make children ready for primary school.
I feel so honoured, cared for and respected and my school, Ikusasalethu, is now noticeable. Sometimes when I think about the great work HomeChoice does, I want to cry but it is tears of joy!!”

Princess – Ikusasalethu principal

Ikusasalethu principal

For more on these stories, visit startingchance.co.za.

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Rainbow development programme

The Trust has been in partnership with True North since 2013 and has funded several successful initiatives and pioneering projects.

A further three-year funding agreement was signed in 2018. This project, within the Rainbow Development Programme, will include skills development, capacity building and the new build of three ECD centres. Total investment into the project is estimated at R7 million with 15% allocated for skills development and capacity building, and 85% for infrastructure. In February 2019 the Trust committed to fund the development and pilot phase of the pre-school registration application. The success of this innovative pilot project could potentially accelerate the registration process of the pre-schools

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The preschools are assessed on entering the programme and assigned a colour band. By the time the ECD facility has progressed through all the colour bands, they will be a safe, legal, profitable and self-sustaining facility, engaging the parent body and the community and mentoring other ECD facilities as they progress through their development journey.

Overcome Educare

Overcome ECD Centre is located on city-owned land in Overcome Heights informal settlement and is one of the EDC’s following the Rainbow Development programme.

The principal and owner, Christine Beukes, had been running the pre-school for almost a decade in a dilapidated informal structure.

The Trust, in partnership with True North, funded the rebuild of Overcome Educare. The build was a pioneering innovative strategy in many aspects. As a registered facility, Overcome Educare is the first ECD centre in an informal settlement to receive a 10-year lease agreement from the City of Cape Town. This was a major breakthrough. True North documented the key learnings of this process so that City of Cape Town officials, other non-profit organisations and other ECD centres within informal settlements could use this for future ECD developments.

Throughout this build and over the last couple of years, the Trust has been instrumental in providing True North not only with financial funding, but also with donations in-kind. Donations of homeware and linen are used in the running of the community support programmes and enabled the opening of True North’s very first community shop. A “community currency programme” was established, which beneficiaries of True North “earn” by attending training and implementing lessons. The beneficiaries can use the currency they have earned to select items from the shop which will benefit their ECD. Some items may also be sold to the local community to raise funds to cover operational costs of the shop and support the community currency programme.

“True North has had the privilege of working with The HomeChoice Development Trust for the past four years

During this time, not only has the Trust given us financial support but they have always been interested in all our projects and our team. The Trust has been flexible and willing to listen to suggestions and redirection from us and reliable in their payment to us.

True North values the relationship with the Trust and we appreciate their ongoing support.”

Vicky Kumm – True North, Managing director

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Integrated Early Childhood Development

The project was launched earlier this year and in partnership with Rotary, the Trust is currently the only corporate donor vested in this exciting integrated ECD project. With significant fundraising undertaken by Rotary Newlands and nine Rotary districts in all five continents, including Rotary International, the project aims to create a community of ECD excellence in the Langa township.

Working in partnership with a broad range of stakeholders from the community and local government, the project targets the provision of quality early childhood education for all the Langa children in the 0-6 age group (a total of 7500 children), of whom only 20% currently have access to any form of ECD service.

The larger goal is to create a replicable community of ECD excellence model, for ongoing roll-out to other disadvantaged communities.

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The project implementation will include:

  • Training and mentoring

  • Monitoring and evaluation of each participating ECD centre to improve the quality of their educational programmes as well as the health and safety standards of the infrastructures.

  • Provision of relevant ECD indoor and outdoor educational materials and equipment

  • Water, sanitation and other infrastructure upgrades

Training and upgrades will ensure that all current and planned new ECD centres meet the required government ECD criteria for Department of Social Development (DSD) government registration, enabling them to access the per child per month government subsidy, thus ensuring project sustainability. This will be supported by project ownership by the community, part of the project management team, and be trained using the United Nations Community Capacity Enhancement programme.

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Emthonjeni: Play group outreach programme

The Emthonjeni playgroup outreach programme reaches the poorest communities in Khayelitsha by offering free ECD access to children in those communities.

The Trust has explored various avenues to develop and build formal ECD centres for these outreach sites but has faced a number of challenges. Going forward support will be provided for alternative infrastructure build options such as containers, providing a safe and secure environment for the children.

Garden Route area

KET, an organisation in the Garden Route area, focuses exclusively on the upliftment of early childhood development.

In 2018 the Trust donated towards the KET skills development, capacity-building and bursary programme. This funding will enable principals and teachers who have worked in ECD for years, but lack a formal qualification, to continue their teaching while completing their studies.

Donations in-kind

The Community Chest distributes the bulk of the Trust’s donations-in-kind. Additional monetary donations are targeted into programmes which upgrade ECD infrastructures in Khayelitsha