July Newsletter 2014


“As a society, we cannot afford to postpone investing in children until they become adults, nor can we wait until they reach school age – a time when it may be too late to intervene. The best evidence supports the policy prescription: invest in the very young and improve basic learning and socialisation skills.” James J. Heckman

“The basic principles of neuroscience indicate that providing supportive conditions for early childhood development is more effective and less costly than attempting to address the consequences of early adversity later.” Jack P. Shonkoff

The most special part of the work that we do must surely be the way that we improve life for the wider communities of KwaZulu-Natal, and especially the most vulnerable of those who live in the towns and villages where we work. Making life better for the youngest residents, the tiny children, is probably one of our most rewarding roles. These children often have mothers who are deceased or away working (or studying), and live with their gogos (grandmothers) or family friends or relatives. These little ones have few if any toys and hardly any stimulation. Many of their care-givers are illiterate and unable to teach even basic reading/learning skills. For these children, our next generation, our beneficiaries have started to create pre-schools and crèches where they are receiving constant informed care and stimulation. We are also training people about ECD or Early Child Development, with some teachers receiving additional training, working towards achieving Further Education and Training Certificates in Early Child Development (level 4). We are proud that twelve crèches in Swayimane have been established, as well as two libraries for pre-school children in Mtubatuba and Swayimane, where the book library is combined with a traveling toy library. Both will benefit pre-schools under Cluster management. Our partners in this wonderful programme are Dorothy Kennett from the USA and her Books for Africa project, and the Rotary Club of Pietermaritzburg. This is leaving a living legacy that will change young lives in ways we can only dream of at this stage.

Rosetta Stander

Winter craft workshops

Pic 1

Even though in South Africa, July is the middle of winter, children across KwaZulu-Natal don’t mind the chilly weather. Why? Because it is School Holiday Workshop time with the Zimele Craft Programme, and instead of being bored all day, they learn exciting new skills and how to work with their hands. Take a look!

Winter warmer campaign!

The Sibusiso Crèche of the Qalokuhle Cluster in Swayimane is a special place for children where they receive attention and love from dedicated care-givers – but sometimes this just isn’t enough! The children are happy and healthy but their crèche facilities are very, very basic – just a rondavel with grass mats on the floor and a single table. We would like to start a drive for people to pledge for funding towards the building costs of a properly built pre-school for these children. Please contact the Zimele office at director@zimelecommunity.co.za if you want to be part of this exciting project, knowing that your contribution will make a life changing difference for these little children for many years to come.

Zimele networking in action
Re size

Making a difference is what Zimele is all about, and thanks to the power of networking, four young women from the Mtubatuba-Richards Bay area have been able to learn computing skills at the distant Imbokodo Computer School in Swayimane. The training of Xolile Mpanza, Senamile Khanyile, Qhamukile Mkhwanazi and Phumelele Zondi was made possible through the initiative of their Zimele Cluster. Thanks to this invaluable training far from where they live, these women now have vital skills to help them find employment or even develop their own business opportunities. Read more…



HIV/Aids training


Zimele recently held a five-day HIV and AIDS training workshop for Self Help Groups in the Zululand District, with 28 participants of all ages attending. This was part of vital skills development for the SHGs, so that they have access to information about crucial health issues that affect their families and their communities on a daily basis. Read more…

Annual General Meeting 2014

We will be holding the Zimele Community annual general meeting on Friday 25 July at the Msunduzi Hospice Conference Centre at 200 Zwartkop Road, Presbury, Pietermaritzburg, starting with tea at 2pm, followed by the AGM from 3-4pm. All are welcome. There is a map to the venue on the Hospice website (www.hospicekzn.co.za) under the “contact us” tab.

Breaking News

Zimele Community mentioned in the Meander Chronicle

Get Involved

Craft Catalogue

Meet our Visitors

South African-based donors will score points in terms of socio-economic development and skills and enterprise development for BEE ratings.

Sign up for Website Mailing List
* = required field