Cape Town – About 350 learners from Riverton Primary school in Bishop Lavis received a warm meal during a special feeding program to help reduce hunger and allow learners to concentrate in class.
The program was funded by Kempston Cleaning which raised money through recyclable material and made it available to two charities, Living Through Learning and Lucky Lucy.
Two grade seven classes received warm winter beanies and a Shoprite mobile food truck provided the learners at the school with soup and bread.
Foundation Phase Head of Department Phillirene Josephus said they were grateful for the assistance especially because some learners had been badly affected by the heavy rains last week.
“There has been a lot of absenteeism as a result of the weather because the learners are assisting at home as their houses have been affected by the floods and their clothes are damp. There is a big need for warm clothes at this school as some learners do not always have a warm jersey or a proper shirt to wear.”
“Our teachers assist by providing school shoes or socks to help keep learners warm,” said Josephus.
Jody Davids, in grade 7, said she was very happy with her new beanie.
“There is a big need for winter clothes at school as some children do not have jackets to wear,” said Davids.
“Today is about giving back to the community, the beanies are to help the children out for the winter and to help those in need. We are just trying to do something good for the community,” said Zani Ver Maak, of Kempston cleaning.
Living Through Learning offers a literacy programme at the school.
“We have done a lot of research where we have compared the results of children who actually eat and children who don’t eat, the results make a huge difference because they cannot concentrate if they are not eating. Their mind is on other things, they are thinking about their next meal instead of focusing on the work and the teacher.”
“Small projects like this make a huge difference,” said Natalie Roos, executive director for Living Through Learning.