Hi Kuriseni Creche, in Mpumalanga, South Africa

The village of Lilydale has a population of approximately 12,000 people. The population is also very young. 36% of the population is under age 19. Statistics show that even though there is a wide range of socio economic status within this community, most households are generally poor. Many men migrate for work and women are expected to care for children and the elderly within their households and wider community. Service delivery in the area is sparse and employment opportunities are extremely limited in the area, outside of working in nearby lodges and informal trading.

A Hi Kuriseni Creche is run by three staff and has a current enrolment of 43 children. Africa Foundation and the community leadership of Lillydale have a long standing relationship and in 2017 they requested the assistance to develop the crèche which was currently run out of a small one room building. The main challenge was the children’s ages which ranged from new born to four years which had to be cared for within the same space despite their variation in daily care needs. The room was also used for the storage of kitchen items, toys and educational resources, as well as the children’s bags and items that they bring with them. Space on the floor was taken up for a couple of mattresses for the youngest children to sleep on.  So far, Africa Foundation has constructed double classrooms at A Hi Kuriseni Creche.