18 July 2022

The #Pavcares campaign continues with contributing to early childhood development!

Submitted by Steven J Brown
The #Pavcares campaign continues with contributing to early childhood development!

During these trying times, any education initiative, and especially those directed towards disadvantaged communities who don’t have resources available to them in order to support early childhood development, supporting nurturing care including health, nutrition, play, learning and protection improving levels of early development for young children.

Currently there are committed organisations that have many challenges but continue to be motivated and determined to provide the services to ensure that their Early Childhood Development Centres provide holistic development and care for children ranging from 6 months to 6 years old. The main objective is providing them developing learning habits in literacy and numeracy skills and encouraging emotional resilience.

Part of this process is also to create daily routines that help these children feel safe and secure as well as teaching them to develop a lifelong love of learning and the opportunity to enjoy a successful future.

What better way to celebrate Nelson Mandela Day then to shine the light on the legacy of a man who changed the 20th century and helped shape the 21st.

The Pavilion Shopping Centre took to a partnership with the Training & Resources in Early Education (TREE) a non-profit organisation that specialises in Early Childhood Development, resource and training where they recognized TREE’s vision to train and capacitate the early childhood development (ECD) workforce enabling them to promote quality holistic early childhood development.

Based on international research, scientific studies inform us that 90% of brain growth and development takes place before the age of five.  Thus, early childhood is the most critical period of growth and development in a person’s life! However, there are roughly 5 million children below 5 in South Africa today. Of these, 2.3 million are affected by abject poverty, while 6% of them have special needs.

Due to high levels of HIV and Aids, many parents have died leaving their children as orphans. Almost 21% of children under 5 years are stunted because of malnutrition and many die unnecessarily from preventable diseases and less than 16% have access to any form of ECD intervention.

Together with TREE, The Pavilion Shopping Centre continue to be unfailing in reaching out and caring for their local community in their #supportlocal and #PavCares campaigns and are stepping up their game even further to further inspire change.

By reaching out to the Okwethu Education Centre and the Siceluthando Educare Centre, both situated in Cato Manor, The Pav invested over R103 000 between these two Centres which includes many valuable items such as outdoor play gym items (swings, jungle gym slides to merry go rounds), cots, blankets, nappies, educational games, musical child friendly instruments and age-appropriate toys.

Feeling inspired, Julie-Anne Zuma, the Marketing Manager for The Pavilion Shopping Centre said, “We recognise that if we can make it easier for these two Centres to give the children the best early learning experiences, knowing that this will go a long way to further better their physical, cognitive, emotional and social development”. She further added that when Mandela stated in one of his speeches that “Education is the most powerful weapon which you can use to change the world.”

The value of education and helping improve the quality of the early years education and wellbeing in the country, provide hope to future generations and is the best investment from The Pav’.  Not only does it #supportlocal, but it continuously plays a part in developing our local community and ensuring their future success.  This meaningful contribution also pays tribute to the legacy left by Nelson Mandela which marks his 104th birth anniversary on July 18.

Wrapping up the heartfelt experience was watching the little one’s from both of the Centre’s interacting with the education items received from The Pavilion, Cleopatra Cele who is the senior training coordinator from TREE extended a heartfelt vote of thanks to #teamPav and was so moved but extremely grateful beyond words, which was the perfect way to celebrate and recognise what Mandela Day is all about!

“Do what you can, with what you have, wherever you are”