Early Childhood Development (ECD) is critical in determining the success of a child’s academic foundations. With this in mind, Waterloo Solar introduced a new programme to upskill community ECD principals and their practitioners in order to provide quality education in a safe and conducive environment.
This initiative, which kicked-off during May 2022, supports 13 ECD centres in the Naledi community and benefits close to 300 young children. This includes providing emergent practitioners with a good grounding in the understanding of ECD and is already yielding positive results.
“We prioritised centres that require educational resources and play equipment, which are both vital in child development. Mentoring and coaching will also be provided to practitioners in identified centres to ensure that learners are properly stimulated and supported,” said Nomzamo Landingwe, Chief Community Operations Officer for Waterloo Solar.
Based on the ECD mapping conducted by Early Care Foundation, the programme implementing partners, nutritional support and training were seen as the most pressing needs, thus the need for this support.
“As part of this programme, we will deliver foundational training, which will ensure that the facilitators are well equipped to provide quality education. Children will be learning in an environment that is safe and with teachers who are able to impart knowledge effectively. We will also provide a daily breakfast to the children, helping to prepare them, as they commence their schooling,” added Landingwe.
In this programme, the focus will be on creating and maintaining an environment where the needs of children can be catered to. This includes basic hygiene, childcare, nutrition, stimulation, and learning. In addition to this, improvements to management systems for pre-schools will be made to ensure they are properly set up and in compliance with government requirements.
“As a result of this programme, our practitioners now know they are on the right track with their teaching methods. Furthermore, this allows them to carry out their work more efficiently as they have more confidence in their teaching abilities. The breakfast the children receive has also contributed to saving money, which has enabled us to purchase more resources,” concluded Principal Joyce Maoto at Bokamoso Early Learning Centre.
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