A beacon of light within the community

FoodBank SA’s beneficiary organisation Precious Lighthouse turned five this year. The Early Childhood Development centre is situated in Elsies River, Cape Town and cares for and teaches around 90 children. FoodBank SA spoke to the principal, Beredine Klein to learn more about the centre and the impact the organisation has had on them. “We are situated in an area that is rife with gangsterism and drugs, making it a difficult area in which to raise children. This educare facility is a light within the community. The teachers are very passionate about giving them an upbringing that they deserve and knowing that we are positively impacting the lives of these children gets me out of bed every morning”.

Klein left her full-time job to run a school that the community needed. “The children deserved a safe and secure school to grow and learn in and I was going to provide it for them”.

Challenges the school continually faces

This development centre lacks basic resources such as paper, books and paint for classroom activities. The dedicated team at Precious Lighthouse know that children learn while they play and having limited equipment is a challenge for them. They also do not have enough mattresses for nap time. The biggest challenge the school faces is to feed the 90 children four times a day. They require breakfast, a morning snack, lunch and an afternoon snack.

FoodBank SA offering a helping hand

FoodBank SA helps Precious Lighthouse feed all 90 of their children by providing the educare with cereals, vegetables and non-perishable food items. FoodBank SA also supplies the centre with toiletries and detergents.

Due to the generosity of FoodBank SA, Precious Lighthouse’s grocery bill is reduced, which allows them to afford their rental payments.

“Receiving support from FoodBank SA is significant for Precious Lighthouse, because not all the parents are able to pay school fees and they have no other sponsor to financially assist the school. I recall a time when we ran out of porridge for the children and FoodBank SA stepped in without hesitation. I burst into tears from gratitude when the food arrived from FoodBank SA”

Partnering up for the greater good

Thanks to Pick n Pay, a partner of FoodBank SA, every Tuesday and Thursday the centre receives donations of baked goods and fresh vegetables and fruit, which is used to cook nutritious meals for the children. There are children in the neighbourhood that are unable to attend the educare as they’re full to capacity. The centre delivers any food that they can spare to these children so that they too can have a meal. Thanks to Pick n Pay for their assistance, which enables them to help in this manner.

“We’re so thankful for the food we get. FoodBank SA doesn’t really understand just how much the donations mean to us. What Foodbank gives us is more than enough to keep us going and for that we are very grateful,” says Klein.