Mon, Aug 3, 2020

Learning taken to WhatsApp


Rapule Moiloa in Tembisa Ekurhuleni

Teachers in Lesotho did not allow the lock down period to disrupt education nor put education on hold due to the current situation that has struck the world and forced countries to be on lock down but have decided to be in contact with parents and learners using WhatsApp as an educational platform so that learners may continue learning. They are affording learners at least three days per week from 5pm to 8pm on Monday, Wednesday and Friday. Learners submit their work on Friday via Whatsapp. There seems to be clear coordination between teachers and parents as they hold children to account in cases where learners fail to do the needful.

Meanwhile…Parents fears and concerns are not just about kids going back to school, how many schools are vandalised or food that will be served at schools to the learners but their kids’ health and safety. The question is how will schools monitor learners in lower grades for children play any how? how will social distancing be maintained in classes during lunch hour and after school and will the educators be able to handle the pressure of seeing to it that rules and regulations are followed, are schools prepared to manage the risk? However instead of parents chilling out in the street doing nothing but talking about things that are not of use to children it is better for them to educate children about corona virus and prepare them for back to school in this crisis.

Extension of the lockdown worrying


Rapule Moiloa in Tembisa…The 16th of April marked the end of episode 1 of the South African lock down and the episode 2 started on 17 April. People are asking each other if these lock downs will really end as they are worried about rentals which are due, school fees, food and other important things. The issue that some of the people are happy with is that alcohol is not being sold because taverns are in between houses and that crime rate is now low.

Lack of technology affects quality of education in public schools


Some of children who go public schools don’t have access to phones or computers. The last time they spoke to their educators was on 17 March 2020 when the schools closed. Yes it is lockdown and children are at home but it looks as if those with no access to technological gadgets will be affected on their year end results. Is the education department working on ways to improve the quality of education not only in the time of COVID-19 but for future purposes? Links for downloading study guides and textbooks are issued but for people who can not afford data, it is really a problem as there are no WIFI facilities nearby. Public schools children will be overloaded with work once the schools re-open. Isn’t e-school supposed to be for all?

The pain of a boy who misses his parents


By: Francisco…On February 20, we interviewed a 10-year-old boy living in the Liberdade neighborhood, he was selling coconut cakes and looking very concentrated and apparently feeling isolated.

Asked about his name and where he lived, the little boy replied that his name was Sawali and that he lived right in front of the place that sold the cookies, specifically in the Liberdade neighborhood, Matola city and Maputo province.

Little Sawali is 10 years old and attends 4th grade at the Escola Primária da Liberdade. This boy, lives with his grandmother and sister, daughter of his aunt and his mother’s sister. Questioned about the whereabouts of his parents, moved, the little one said that the mother had died and his father is in another province, specifically in Gaza and lives with another woman and children.

1. When you go to school, who is selling the cookies?

Sawali says that no one is selling the cookies, sometimes when he returns early from school sells them.

2. What has your Mana been doing?

She hasn’t done anything, sometimes she helps our grandmother, but there are few times she has done it, it depends on her mood and her willingness to do it.

3. In relation to your father, have you spoken to him? Have they visited you?

“I spoke to him one day on his cell phone, but it was a long time ago, he never came to visit me, I was the one who visited him, but it was also a long time ago.”

Noticing little Sawali’s shyness and emotion in relation to this conversation, we chose to change the subject, asking him, what he wants to be when he grows up, promptly stated that he wants to be a professional football player and that he had Messe, the Jersey 10 from Barcelona as his idol.

4. Can you mention any rights of child?

• “The child has the right to play, study, pray and grow up.”

He is such a brilliant child who endures the pain of having lost his mother and lack of support from the father.

A dor de um menino que sente a falta dos pais

Por: Francisco Manhique

Figura 1. Foto desfocada, com vista a preservar a imagem do menino.

Figure 1. Blurred photo, in order to preserve the boy’s image.

No dia 20 de Fevereiro entrevistamos um menino de 10 anos residente no bairro da liberdade, ele vendia bolinhos de coco e estava com aspecto muito concentrado e aparentemente sentindo-se isolado.

Questionado sobre o seu nome e onde morava, o pequeno menino respondeu que se chamava Sawali e que residia logo em frente em relação ao local que vendia os bolinhos, concretamente no bairro da liberdade, cidade da Matola e província de Maputo.

O pequeno Sawali tem 10 anos e frequenta a 4ª classe na Escola Primária da Liberdade. Este menino, vive com a avo, Mãe de sua Mãe e mana, filha de sua tia, irmã de sua Mãe. Questionado sobre o paradeiro dos pais, emocionado, o pequeno disse que a Mãe tivera falecido e o seu pai está numa outra província, especificamente em Gaza e vive com uma outra mulher e filhos.

  1. Quando vais a escola, quem fica a vender os bolinhos?

Sawali afirma que ninguém fica a vender os bolinhos, por vezes, quando volta cedo da Escola, retorna na venda dos mesmos, e qualquer trabalho da escola tem realizado enquanto vende.

  • Oque sua Mana tem feito?

Ela não tem feito nada, por vezes ajuda a nossa avó, mas são poucas as vezes em que tem feito, depende do seu humor e sua boa vontade o fazer.

  • Em relação ao seu pai, tens falado com ele? Ele têm-te visitado?

“Falei com ele um dia ao telemóvel, mas já faz muito tempo, ele nunca veio visitar-me, eu é que fui um dia lhe visitar, mas também faz muito tempo.

Notando a timidez e a emoção do pequeno Sawali em relação a essa conversa, optamos por mudar de assunto, perguntando-lhe, oque ele quer ser quando crescer, prontamente, afirmou que quer ser um jogador profissional de futebol e que tinha Messe, o Camisola 10 do Barcelona como seu ídolo.

  • Podes mencionar alguns direitos da criança?
  • “a criança tem direito de Brincar”;
  • De estudar;
  • De rezar; e
  • Crescer.

Esses são alguns dos direitos da criança mencionados por este menino que sente a dor de ter perdido a sua mãe e clara auxência de seu pai.

Students evicted from residences


Students from Langeni College, Mpumalanga Campus were evicted from their residences after the National Student Financial Aid Scheme (NSFAS) failed to meet its obligation. Failure by NSFAS to meet its obligation has detrimental effects on the performance of students as students are subjected to unfavourable conditions. The National Student Financial Aid Scheme should therefore ensure to make timely pay-outs so that students are not disturbed.

Government Must Help Save Our Teenagers


I was in Eshowe, Northern KwaZulu Natal, at the hospital on Saturday night where I witnessed some teenage patients of about 14 years who were brought in by ambulance because they attempted to commit suicide. Some of them evidently had anger issues.

It is my opinion that our Government must intervene with workshops in schools considering how prevalent it has become, especially in the rural areas. Workshops such as these can also help parents to know how to relate better with teenagers. It is sad that every now and then there are is a funeral in our community.

Poverty and Unemployment


Poverty and unemployment are major factors undermining young women. When families are not able to provide the basics, young women are left to search for financial support.

“Poverty plays a big role, it makes us young women want to escape it to survive it even it means selling our souls. We have no idea what human dignity, dignity is foreign to us.”

“We have no money for even the basic stuff such as sanitary pads”

Many young women are forced to assist their parents, especially when the father is not present, to look after their siblings, to provide food, school uniforms and other needed things

Boyfriends with Money and Older Men

“Many of us rely on our boyfriends with money for basic things. Some continue toxic relationships simply because the man can provide for their needs”

“Young women date older men, because they are not working and they say at least they will be taken care of.

“A man buys a woman drinks at a tavern or even buy them food. Then they think that they are already dating and that they woman is his property”

Jobs for Sex

“A lot of time when women are looking for work there must be an exchange for sex for a woman to be employed. The pressure is great because the unemployment rate is very high.”

“It is hard to get a job if you don’t know someone. If that someone is a man, then he proposes sex.”

“After grade 12 I did an administration course at a college. Due to a lack of work I had to go and work as a domestic. I heard that our municipality has a post for admin. I applied and was called for an interview. A man called me saying I should come to his office. He told me that there is “nothing for mahala”, its rather a “table interview” or that I pay R2500. I pleaded saying I won’t sleep for work. Please wait for me to get paid so that I will pay you. The guy refused and insisted on sex. At first, I was tempted, but then I refused. I did not want to lose my dignity and suffer the danger of sexual diseases.”

Fake Marriages with Foreign Nationals

“Women in our township link up with foreign nationals. Foreign nationals take advantage of the woman’s state of poverty. They ask them to marry them and they promise them that they will give them an amount of R400 per month. This fake marriage means that they women cannot apply for a child support grant. use them to get permits. They marry them and then pay them a small amount of money. This


“Many young women end up in prostitution, even staying with an older man for regular payments is a form of prostitution”

“Out of 100% it’s only 25 % of young women who support their kids with the little they receive to buy food, clothes and the necessity’s for the kids but many of which end in prostitution because of unemployment and if only they can get money to buy booze to forget their problems and yes she stated that dating older men it makes it better to get what they need such as clothes, toiletries and other stuff”

“She said that unemployment pushes or drives young women in to prostitution in around Diepkloof to either get drugs, alcohol and other needs, many women end up being victim’s because of unemployment”.

The Problems with Setting Up Small Businesses

Women do attempt to get an income through small business activities.

“Women find it difficult to set up their own small business. They get no support from government”

“Even if one starts a small business of selling at a street corner, the JMPD (city police) will be there to harass people who are trying to build something for themselves. They have their possessions taken from them. If the government could protect and respect the rights of people selling in the street corners and pavements, then many people would create employment for themselves.

The Poverty Traps

“Poverty is more than just a lack of income or not working. Lack of resources causes one to think passively, includes shame and limited access to education.”

“Our parents can hardly afford money for us to go to school. We end spend weekends in the taverns. We sleep with different men in exchange for alcohol and money. We end up contracting diseases and having children we cannot support.

Failure of the Education System

“We we’re all made to believe that education is the key by our parents and the government but reality is that’s not true you go to school waste +-15yrs with the hope that when you finished school you’ll be employed and you’ll take care of yourself after graduation you become excited and say I won I have the key with me when you go knock on the door, the door slams on your face and the world is looking up to you to excel but how do you excel when you have a key that doesn’t open the door in front of you? You become frustrated in the sense that Boom you choose a short cut that takes you to the deep end which is drugs just to shift your focus and think it’s an easy way. You don’t have any more answers to your peers because they dropped out from school but you kept going until to the last bit (graduation) they still say the same thing that “you thought you were better than us but look now as you educated but we are in same WhatsApp group” we all not working despite the fact that you are a University graduate we drink together we might as well look out for Blesser (sugar daddy) to buy us alcohol and drugs we feed our cravings in exchange for sex.”

Annual Career Exhibition at Imbali


By Ntwenhle Hadebe

On 17 August 2019 there was a 1st Annual Career Exhibition  at Imbali Unit 14 Community hall .This event was created by Luyanda Meyiwa and his colleagues. The purpose of the career exhibition is to provide information and knowledge about careers offered by various institutions, as well as development for learners. They invited community FET ,colleges and universities  to give clear  information.                                              

UN Youth Consultation Workshop


A two-day youth consultation workshop was coordinated by the UN South Africa to discuss the challenges, gaps and recommendations towards the National Development Plan (NDP) 7 pillars from the youth perspective. Robust and constructive conversations took place whereby exploring different channels that the youth of SA could use to work towards achieving the Sustainable Development Goals (SDGs), 2030 Agenda. However, a recommendation was that the young people should embrace the ‘NOTHING FOR US , WITHOUT US” mantra meaning that youth need to participate in decision making platforms and ensuring having youth in strategic UN positions to drive the youth agenda forward.

Crime in schools


People of Gamogashoa village have been shocked by the latest crime that happened at Mogashoa Primary School and Motlake Creche in April 2018. At Motlake Creche thieves cut a whole in the fence to get inside the premises, broke a window to get in and steal food. Same thing happened at Mogashoa Primary School few days before Easter. The school is on NSNP (National School Nutrition Participants) and really disappointing for people to steal children’s food. It is not for the first time that people broke into the school and Creche premises. The school, creche and church are located next to a cemetery and only one side is visible to the main road. There are also empty houses next to the creche. Crime is a serious problem as people are unemployed and most of the children are SASSA grant beneficiaries. There are no street lights, the trees & aloes make the place darker at night. On 6 May 2019 one community member’s money was stolen.