“My name is Nomonde. I stay in Khayelitsha in the community of Harare. I’m running an Early Child Development (ECD) project since 2010 and after school program, Sonwabile Educare.
This program was my dream when I was working in one of the NGOs in Cape Town. I was working with women, and from that experience I realised that they were dealing with the scars of their childhood. Some of the challenges they were facing were the results of their wrong choices that they made in their childhood and their upbringing. From that experience I was always thinking of making a difference in one or two kids in my community so that they do not fall in the same trap.
In 2008 I was retrenched at work, and the first thing I thought about was to start my centre and work with young people. I did parenting training by the social service. After that training I felt that it was high time to start my dream. I fostered 2 kids, one was a relative and the other was from the community. This passion of fostering became bigger and bigger in my heart until I became attached to these kids and I opened a Sonwabile Educare Centre in 2010 so that they could be around home all the time with people they love and know. One of the boys was one month then. The love of children became more and more, the department started to come with children for some temporary safe until their families were identified and taken to them. When they were six one morning it was announced that people are taking care of and more children should register, that’s when I started to follow the procedure of registering and the centre became registered in 2012.
I started to open after care for the children whose parents are at work so that when they are coming from school they will come do their homework and some activities like traditional dance and singing and I taught them some life skills.
My aim about these young people of ages 9-15 is to make sure that they are taught and guided in terms of careers and also be empowered and life skills so that they can be able to confidently make good choices, and build their self-esteem so that they can make informed decisions about their lives. To be able to stand peer pressure, love themselves and accept the fact that they are coming from different backgrounds, but what is important is their future. To take care of their bodies and not be taken advantage of by older people.
My wish is to see them having a multipurpose centre where they can show their talents and keep busy so that they won’t be exposed to things happening in our communities. These young minds need to be taught that knowledge is the power and what the other children are exposed to in the town schools even have in our communities they can experience. With the assistance of The Happy Africa Foundation and African Impact I am definitely sure that my dream is going to be true.”