The City of Cape Town, in partnership with Hillsongs Church, donated 180 litres of bottled water to the Nompumelelo School for Mentally and Physically Challenged Children in Gugulethu. In addition to the bottled water Executive Mayor Patricia de Lille provided wheel-chairs, commodes and walking sticks to the school. The Mayor also undertook to donate R10 000 to the school to assist with necessities which the principal Mr Thubeni may use to the benfefit of the children.
'I received the 180 five-litre bottles of water as a donation from Pastor Paul White from Hillsongs Church in Gugulethu and identified the school as one of the beneficiaries. The Nompumelelo Special School plays a critical role in the community by giving children with intellectual disabilities the opportunity to acquire skills. The vision of the school is to enhance, assess and provide programmes for all its learners while under a caring environment. Currently the school offers skills such as computer training and is working diligently to secure and offer additional skills programmes such as cooking and handwork for the future,' said the City's Mayoral Committee Member for Area Central, Councillor Siyabulela Mamkeli.
The school is divided into four categories, the junior phase (ages 4 to 9 years), intermediate phase (10 to 12 years), senior phase (12 to 15 years), and the occupational phase (16 to 18 years). Learners in the occupational phase are known as school-leavers.
Sadly, after 18 years of age the school-leavers are not able to attend a tertiary institution because our education structure does not make provision for children who are mentally challenged. Therefore, the school relies on donations not only to assist and improve the well-being and welfare of the children but also to cover the cost of teaching the children in the occupational phase a skill that they may use in order to become partially self-reliant and to earn an income.
This is one of the priorities in the City's Organisational Development and Transformation Plan that we have committed to achieving, namely, to improving the well-being and welfare of vulnerable residents.
Children who attend Nompumelelo include those living with autism, dyslexia and downs syndrome.
Nompumelelo is a public school that follows the Adaptive Curriculum for learners with Special Needs and incorporates aspects of the CAPS curriculum. The school offers Xhosa as the main language and English as the first additional language. The staff complement consists of 24 teachers, two occupational therapists, an educational nurse and two administration clerks in addition to the principal.
There are an estimated 15 children per class which allows for more focused individual attention for each learner.
Source: City of Cape Town