a childcare centre in South Africa …”
Nurseries and childcare centres do not receive any financial support from the South African government – for us it was a good reason …
Nurseries and childcare centres do not receive any financial support from the South African government – for us it was a good reason to do something for one of these facilities with the help of the Margarete Müller-Bull Foundation. The facility in question is the Simunye childcare centre for children aged two to six years.
The Simunye childcare centre is located in the Mzamo’Mhle settlement of corrugated tin huts near East London. It was founded in October 1999 by German women living in the area for while with their families. During their stay in South Africa the women and their families not only discovered the beauty of the country, but also daily witnessed the misery of the people living in the corrugated tin hut settlements. At the time around 12,000 people, including 3,000 children lived there. Their physical suffering, caused by hunger and work, and the complete lack of educational opportunities for the future of the children prompted the women to take action. Following initial efforts to look after the children in the garden of the small hospital of Mzamo’Mhle, a generous donation from the World Childhood Foundation enabled the building of the present Simunye childcare centre. Since opening in 2003, 60 children aged between two and six are cared for every year, most of whom are from the African Xhosa tribe. The corrugated tin hut settlement of Mzamo’Mhle has grown though, and as ever, the facility relies mainly on the personal initiative of people keen to help. Volunteers, educators and the childcare centre team provide the children with a friendly, safe environment and age-appropriate education that focuses on tolerant, social and cultural behaviour as part of child development, promoted by taking meals together and hygiene education.
Simunye is registered in South Africa as a non-profit organisation. The funding from the Margarete Müller-Bull Foundation is aimed at ensuring the further extension of this facility and thus also at ensuring a future for these children from Africa – the world’s largest continent that is so important for all of our futures.