A fairly new non-profit organisation (NPO) in Ntabethemba’s, Phelandaba Village hosted the first-ever Heritage Day celebrations in the area to entertain parents and children and to introduce themselves to the community.
The NPO, Ikhwezi Lomso Extended Education Project was established in January this year and has started to work with local clinics, schools and the police forum to try to curb drug abuse and teenage pregnancy among pupils.
“This is a first for the people of this community and we are proud to have been the first organisation to make it happen. However, we are an NPO that works with diverse issues like psychologically ill people, academically challenged children and we organise activities, including sport, drama and music, that will help keep children away from doing substances.”
Bonelwa said more programmes would run next year when the NPO received funding because they also hoped to assist grade 12 pupils in the area to apply for bursaries.
“We firstly would like to refurbish the building where they study for exams and provide food for them so that parents do not have to pay. We found that most matric pupils do not apply to tertiary institutions until they receive their results in January, then they are not accepted and end up staying at home for that whole year. Some do not even go back the following year. We will help them look early for admission and bursaries so that by January they know where they are headed.”
Bonelwa said during the year they would conduct career exhibitions for all children in the village so they may have an idea of the different fields of study available to them, and make good choices about where they would like to end up in life.
Representatives from the departments of health, social development, education and the local police forum offered messages of support and how they would work together with the NPO for the betterment of the community.
Pupils from various schools performed activities to entertain those present.