The Breadline Africa team joined Lizzie Mathiso, the principal of Sijongephambili Créche in Strand, Western Cape for a huge celebration on Friday 29 April 2022 as her new, upgraded pre-school facilities were officially launched. After the children impressed everyone with their enthusiastic singing and dancing, Lizzie took the time to share her story.
In December last year, Lizzie contacted Breadline Africa when she was desperate for help. She had lost two of her classrooms during a massive storm and had to relocate her pre-school at the request of the local authorities. Lizzie lost most of her children as she could not accommodate all of them, and only had a handful of the 200 children enrolled when Breadline Africa visited her in January 2022. Breadline Africa was able to replace Lizzie’s condemned kitchen and unsanitary toilets with a brand-new fibreglass structure. The five-metre-long unit is subdivided into three toilet cubicles and a kitchen space and is the first alternative infrastructure placement of 2022.
The boat-building company, Helderberg Marine, modified one of their new Adventure Houses to meet the pre-school’s needs. For Breadline Africa, the fibreglass unit has many advantages of which the main one is a built-in water storage system that supplies rainwater to the kitchen and toilets. Fibreglass is comparable to steel in terms of the amount of energy it requires to produce and, being very light, the units are energy efficient to produce. As the structure was originally designed to be on the water, it doesn’t face the rust challenges that containers do and makes the maintenance much less onerous. The structures are classified as mobile units and can be lifted and repositioned with a crane and hence don’t require building plan approvals.
The teachers and children of Sijongephambili Créche also received a 49m² prefabricated classroom and Lizzie explained that there is a great need for safe pre-school facilities in the Lwandle area. After having the new facilities on her grounds for just a few weeks, Lizzie has already enrolled 20 children and she is confident that more children will join soon!
Lizzie thanked everyone for her big, new, safe classroom, kitchen and toilets.