13 March 2017

South Africa: MEC Debbie Schafer Thanks Individuals and Organisations That Have Assisted Schools in Imizamo Yethu

press release

The fire in the Hout Bay area over the weekend affected three schools in particular - Silikamva High, Oranjekloof Moravian Primary, and Disa Primary.

About 120 learners at Silikamva High School lost all of their possessions.

The principal, Angus Duffett, and his staff and partners, have worked tirelessly to replace uniforms and textbooks, and generally to provide relief.

He is working with two organisations, The Respond Network and The Warehouse, via churches. He and his partners spoke to church services across the Peninsula yesterday.

By Monday midday, they have already raised nearly R500 000. The Gift of the Givers also visited the school today to offer assistance with uniforms and textbooks.

Education officials, school staff and our circuit manager, will walk through Imizamo Yethu this afternoon to express solidarity with the community.

Silikamva is working jointly with Oranjekloof to identify needs and organise relief.

Oranjekloof is a collaboration school, where the WCED is collaborating with education donors to fund, manage and support education at the school.

Common Good, our operating partner at Oranjekloof, has donated R100 000 towards replacing uniforms and textbooks.

Most learners at the school live in Imizamo Yethu. The school has more than 1 000 learners. The school is still busy assessing the needs of the learners.

Meanwhile, the homes of about 100 learners at Disa Primary burnt down, along with those of three teachers. About 350 families with children at Disa are looking after family members affected by the fire.

Gerda van der Westhuizen, the principal, said the school has supplied all 100 learners with uniforms from the school's shop and has replaced their textbooks .The school has a generous donor who is covering costs.

Teachers at the school made 500 sandwich and fruit packs for parents who attended a meeting at the school this morning. The staff will make curry and rice tonight for any Imizamo Yethu resident who would like to visit the school.

The department is liaising closely with the schools in the area to determine any outstanding needs, including ongoing trauma counselling, as required.

I would like to thank every individual and organisation who has assisted our schools by identifying their needs following this tragic incident, and in turn assisting us where possible.

Issued by: Western Cape Education

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