There is hammering and scraping, the sound of a spade hitting the dry ground, the soft swish of paint against the wall, the muffle of voices and laughter every now and then. This is not just another day at Noluthando Day Care Centre, but a week that stands out for all of us – for the Christian Community youth group, for Richard, the caretaker, for the teachers, Nozuko and Phumza, and for Samara Foundation.
Samara, who has had a relationship with Noluthando for some time already, had invited the visiting youth group from Vienna to stay at the kindergarten for a week to renovate the old farmhouse and get to know the surrounding community. This included the local Chief – Chieftainess Tyali – who welcomed us when we all arrived at Noluthando.
It was a busy and exciting week with the youth group tackling anything from digging trenches for the toilet plumbing, knocking out window spaces, replacing window panes, scraping down walls and fixing cracks to the repainting of rooms and repairing and redecorating of swings and a playground space. Those with deft hands also crocheted woollen balls for the kindergarten children to play with and before long curious bystanders were learning to crochet too.
There was also a community day with the children and families of the kindergarten where Nozuko and Phumza, with help from other local women, undertook to cook a traditional meal for everyone – quite a feat which had them up at 7am in the morning, getting the dough ready for the roosterkoeke and soaking the samp for the traditional samp and beans mixture.
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