They’re only little. And they come from families who have very little.
But, just like everyone else, these little ones have the right to dignity. And having to use a bucket, or dangerous pit toilet, is just not good enough.
Unfortunately, a row of buckets in a dingy room is an all too familiar sight at many informal Early Childhood Development Centres. Others have one old loo (often broken or missing the seat) that must be shared by all the children and staff.
Still, the women who run these centres are doing their best. With almost no money and very few resources, they strive to provide a safe environment for township children … and to encourage play and learning. What little money parents can afford to pay goes towards food for the children, and a few educational toys and books. Proper ablution facilities for the kids, while sorely needed, are an impossible dream.
Unless friends like you step in to help with a special donation to mark Human Rights Day on 21 March.
Siyabonga Africa is currently providing training and development support to ten Gauteng ECD Centres through our Ngwana Pele project. But we want to do more. And with help from caring people like you, we plan to install decent ablution ‘pods’ at each of these child care centres.
What is a ablution pod, you may wonder? It’s a prefab building with a row of child size, flushing toilets, a urinal for boys, and hand basins positioned low down so that kids can reach them easily.
Being prefabricated, the pods are the most affordable option. Plus they are quick and easy to install. Even so, by the time you add transport costs, plumbing and electricty, the price tag is around R100000 ($6500/£5000). That’s why we really need your help to turn this dream into reality.
Your gift of R198 ($13/£10) buys a basin tap; R500 ($33/£25) pays for one child sized toilet; R1 000 ($65/£50) helps towards the cost of transportation and installation. And smaller gifts pay for water pipes, interior LED lights and drain covers. Every rand counts!
In a few short years today’s children will grow up and become tomorrow’s leaders and decision makers. If we want our country to be a place where human rights are respected, we need to instill those values now.
Above all, we never want to see headlines like this again: “Girl, 5, dies after falling into pit toilet at Eastern Cape school” (March 2018). Little Lumka Mketwa was one of two children who suffered a similar fate that year. But there have been many other cases over the years. And it’s nothing short of disgraceful.
So please, will you help us provide safe, hygienic ablution facilities for children now?