Khombukukhanya Crèche

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Minimum Donation of R50

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Goal: R5,000.00 | Still Needed: R5,000.00 | Total Supporters So Far: 0 | Amount of People in Need: 70

When Kanyisiwe Mbambo was 16 years old, her father told her that she would be leaving school. She had learned enough, he said.

So, there she was… young, clever and rife with potential, but with nowhere to put all of it.
Potential has a way of making itself heard, though, and it wasn’t long before Kanyisiwe’s potential began leading her to what she was meant to do: care for children. Teach them; soothe them; keep them safe.

For years, her family home became her hometown’s only crèche. Even her father had to admit that she had a knack for what she was doing, and began helping with the project. In the early eighties, however, Kanyisiwe met her future husband.

Once married, they moved to Pinelands, where for a few months she keenly felt the absence of the work she loved and the children she adored. And so, Pinelands became the location of Kanyisiwe’s second crèche.

Violence in the area saw the couple flee to the tiny rural area of Habeni in 1988, and this is where Khombukukhanya Crèche’s story – though it is the culmination of Kanyisiwe’s whole life – truly begins.

The Habeni community had known for quite some time that a form of daycare was necessary. Parents needed to travel far for work, and their children were often left to wander around aimless and uncared for. They had no idea, however, of how to start and successfully run a place like that.

Not until Kanyisiwe arrived.

She established Khombukukhanya in 1993, using her children’s bedroom as a classroom for many years. These days, she and a team of five take care of 70 of Habeni’s children under four from a small structure built for them by their local municipality.

Because of what they do in this small building, Habeni’s babies are safe and stimulated in their most vulnerable years.
The team yearns for a bigger space, which would enable them to separate their students according to age as well as take in the many 4 – 5-year-olds for whom they currently have no room.

Parents pay R30 per child, although many cannot afford even this, and so it is a monthly Social Development grant that keeps Khombukukhanya afloat, but barely.


Photographer: Zonika Murray from NixoGraphy Photography | Voice Artist: Thulisa Mayalo | Writer: Ané Breytenbach

Type of Cause:
Babies, Children and Youth, Development, ECD, Education


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