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Western Cape Schools Receive Donations For Learners

Learners at five schools in the Western Cape were left with smiles after receiving donations of food and learning materials. With more than 2 million learners reportedly not receiving meals from the National School Nutrition Programme (NSNP), these donations came at the right time for these learners.

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Non-profit organisation Living Through Learning (LTL) handled the handing over of 500 relief boxes to learners in schools from Parow Valley, Voorbrug and Gugulethu. The relief boxes were donated by the Lunchbox Fund.

LTL has been providing support to 26 schools in the Western Cape. The organisation has done this by promoting literacy and skills development in schools. 

A spokesperson for Sonwabo Primary School in Gugulethu said the donation would provide relief for many parents who have been disadvantaged by the Covid-19 lockdown.

“Most of them have lost their jobs, so to put food on the table at this time during the pandemic is a difficult thing,” he said.

Principal of Vergenoegd Primary School in Voorburg, Jonathan Goodall said the school has to feed more than 700 learners a day. The relief boxes helped about 90 grade R learners at the school. 

A teacher at the school, Leander Heyns said the learners would benefit from the donations.

“A lot of these children come to school each day not having food to eat, so the only time for some of them is the meal that they eat at school. This will help a lot, especially during this time. Many parents lost their jobs.”

The schools also received a donation of 500 sensory books along with the relief boxes. 

The meal donations come during a time where civil rights group, Equal Education has been concerned about learners not receiving meals. 

According to Equal Education, nearly 2 million learners are still not receiving meals on days when they are not at school.

The organisation said most provinces have failed to provide meals to learners and many of the reports about the school nutrition programme lacked consistency. 

Equal Education conducted a survey which showed a need for a reliable mode of transport for learners to collect meals. Another problem that the organisation highlighted was the fact that the Free State never submitted a progress report. 

The organisation believes that the Department of Basic Education should take responsibility to communicate with schools, learners and families about the safety measures put in place and the times to collect meals at school.

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