Local church reaches out to needy learners

Learners from Ikusasalethu Primary School at Extension 28 in Vosloorus are excited to receive gifts from the Methodist Church of Southern Africa (MCSA) Women Umanyano. They are seen with Mary Nqana, the president of MCSA Women Umanyano, and vice president Nontuthuzelo Nakumba.

Church members went to donate sanitary towels for girls and toiletries for both boys and girls.

Mary Naqaba, the president of MCSA Women Umanyano, said the school is the most vulnerable of all the schools around.

“Most of the students from the school are from the informal settlements. And their parents are still young.

“Their parents can’t afford to buy them sanitary towels and toiletries. We all know the situation of most of the people from informal settlements,” said Nqaba.

She said they adopted the school four years ago.

“We have been doing this at the same school for the past four years. Each time we do this it reminds us, as the church, of our calling and that we must put the Gospel into practice. We are allowing God to use us in this case by restoring the dignity of these needy learners,” said Nqaba.

Nqaba warned learners not to allow elders to take their gifts from them.

“I am not expecting to see elders taking these gifts away from children. It is for children. At the same time boys must not sell these gifts to buy something else,” said Nqaba.

Philisiwe Ngwenya, a member of the School Based Support Team (SBST), said for a school to function effectively it needs its community and parents to play their part.

“In this case, members of MCSA as the community members have played their part. They have shown that they want children to learn,” said Ngwenya.

She said this will reduce the drop-out rate and the drug abuse that results from it.

“It will also eliminate blessers. Children think they need blessers in their lives to buy them toiletries and so on,” said Ngwenya.

During the ceremony the children entertained the guests with music.

A motivational speech was organised for the learners.

Tanya Chikwerenhere (11), a Grade Six learner thanked the MCSA on behalf of all the schoolchildren.

“This project is very helpful for us learners, especially girls.

“There is this tendency in this school of learners laughing at each other if they don’t have sanitary towels. As a result those without sanitary towels end up missing school,” said Chikwerenhere.

This is not good, she added.

The boys’ packs included bath soap, a towel, toothpaste, a toothbrush, lotion and roll-on.

The girls’ packs included the same items as well as sanitary towels.

There were more than enough gift packs to around. Those left over were given to the schoolteachers to keep at the school for emergencies.

Aaron Damane

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