Goal: R5,000.00 | Still Needed: R5,000.00 | Total Supporters So Far: 0 | Amount of People in Need: 49
Though the town of Virginia boasts with some of the largest gold fields in the Free State, not many of the town’s residents share the fields’ abundance. Meloding location in particular struggles immensely due to a lack of employment, which leads to an array of social ills.
In short, Meloding isn’t friendly to young children, and in 1996 there was only one crèche around to shield them from things like abuse and kidnapping. One wasn’t nearly enough, so Puleng Lydia Thobatsi – or Mapalesa to friends – took it upon herself to take on the important responsibility of developing her township’s young ones.
Mollelwa’s team of five works hard to develop their 49 beneficiaries as holistically as possible – attested by the crèche’s colourful art and book corners. Mapalesa, being the eldest of 12 children, has been a natural caregiver from a young age, and seeks to improve the lives of all her beneficiaries and ensure that they leave her crèche both educated and inspired for the future.
The team has been working from a rented church hall since the crèche’s conception, but will soon move to other premises – a large shack. Here, at least there will be no rent charged, which will alleviate some of Mollelwa’s financial burden.
This is not, however, an ideal solution. Shacks, though cheap, invite all sorts of accidents, and Mapalesa’s biggest wish is to have a secure building of her own to use as premises for the crèche.
Mollelwa receives a quarterly government grant, which is supplemented by small fees from parents, but the team falls financially short most months.
Photographer: Vanelda Abrams from Vanelda Abrams Photography | Voice Artist: Usisipho Ngxubaza | Writer: Ané Breytenbach