Ark Angels Educare in the informal Settlement of Overcome Heights
More than 45'000 people live in the informal settlement of Overcome Heights, where children are subjected daily to squalor and violence, are malnutrition and unprepared for school. The living conditions in the shanty town are shocking. Almost all of the residents live in small corrugated iron shacks measuring about 5m x 9m. Few have running water in their homes and most are forced to share outside sanitation facilities. Due to the high unemployment, many homes have problems with alcohol, drug abuse, woman and child abuse and crime.
Ark Angels Educare in Overcome Heights is a community-based Early Childhood Development Centre which caters for children by taking them off the streets and providing them with 2 warm meals and early childhood education. It also empowers women to find employment in the area.
The Centre was founded by Pastor Prosper of the Ark Chapel International Ministries in March 2015. During school hours the corrugated shack, which accommodates the church on weekends, is converted into a Day care allowing 60 children, aged between 0 – 6 years to be taken care of, while their parents are at work. There are three classes, namely Toddlers, Junior and Senior classes. Parents are asked to pay a nominal monthly school fee of R250 to R300.
The Vision of Ark Angels Educare Kindergarten
- Ark Angels Educare's vision is to build a new day care centre for about 80 to 100 children (space permitting) on a piece of land, allocated to early childhood education.
- Responding to the high demand for pre-primary education and childcare in this area.
- Provide hope for the future through early childhood education, teaching of the English language and personal hygiene.
- Provide children with balanced nutrition.
- Offer reliable care, thus enabling parents to enter the workforce.
- Reach out to the poorest of the community.
- Create employment with reasonable remuneration for women from the community.
- Presently the Educare is operating from a small shack with limited space, which is not conducive for effective teaching of its 70 children.
- No storage space available for teaching and learning material.
- Not able to accommodate the high demand in pre-primary and early childhood education.Only one outside toilet for 60 children and 7 staff members.
- No running water except one tap outside the shack.
- A tiny kitchen without any windows or ventilation and no storage space for food.
- No playground for the children.