Sibongile and his fellow Stepping Stones Gardeners.
Today Sibongile and Luella (who both teach ball skills and gardening to the children) as well as Alan are running the Cape Town Marathon to help raise funds for Stepping Stones Children’s Centre.
For those not [too] familiar with Stepping Stones and how it came to be, here is a little history. In 1976 it was started in the old Albertus Street Primary School, a school closed as a result of the Group Areas Act in District Six during the 1960s. It was started by the Buitenkant Street Methodist Church under the leadership of Dr Charles Villa-Vicencio.
One of the founding principles of the school was that no child will be classified according to race which meant that no funding was forthcoming from the government. With limited funds the school relied for a long period on volunteers. Today there are 15 staff members, and volunteers continue to add great value to the lives of the children. An estimated number of between 3 000 to 4 500 children have thus far received their foundation education at Stepping Stones.
Stepping Stones is much more than a day-care centre. It is a safe place where parents who work in the city are able to leave their children during the day with the assurance that the holistic development of every child is the main priority.
Each day is filled with age-appropriate activities, nutritious meals and learning opportunities. Gardening, physical activities, art, a time to nap and a time for stillness, a time to play in a group or quietly by themselves, reading, drama and maths activities are some of what is accomplished daily by the children.
Celebrations are special occasions—celebrating our heritage, end of year achievements, special people and so much more. A variety of outings also take place from time to time such as visits to Kirstenbosch Gardens, the ECD Reading Centre, Butterfly World and the like.
What was started out of a great need to help the displaced families of District Six has grown into a vibrant and life-giving Centre for children of our city. Long-time congregation members, as well as “new” ones, continue to support the Centre because of their firm belief in the importance of education and especially early childhood development. This legacy is worth continuing and expanding upon.
We are grateful to Luella, Sibongile and Alan for putting on their running shoes to help create awareness and raise funds for the children, but it doesn’t mean we all have to do it the “hard” way … we can simply donate what we can … a bit of time and/or some money!
You can contact them to find out how best you can support them via email: firstname.lastname@example.org. The website is www.steppingstoneschildrenscentre.org.za. Like their Facebook page where regular updates on what is happening at Stepping Stones are posted.
By linking your MySchoolMyVillageMyPlanet card to Stepping Stones you will also help them with their fundraising efforts.
Thank you for all the generous support and donations!