One of our key founding principles is to respond to the social challenges facing our society currently. Whilst these challenges are many, Orchid10 focuses its social responsiveness work on education. Our premise is that through education (for all ages) South Africans will be able to access their human dignity and explore their full potential and also participate in building strong and thriving communities. All of Orchid10’s work in this area fall under its non-profit entity Keep The Dream.

Sigangeni School Handover

Our Work Thus Far

  • In September 2010, Orchid10 held a fundraiser for Sigangeni Junior Secondary School to raise awareness about the plight of the school as well as to mobilise support and resources for the school. The event raised over R60,000 as well as a widerange of pledges that would support the school in transforming from its current reality.
  • In October 2010, an Orchid10 Task Team visited the Eastern Cape to convene withthe Department of Education in the Eastern Cape, the school and a range of other community stakeholders to come up with a strategy and project plan forthis ambitious endeavour.
  • Queenstown Boys Junior College also enthusiastically responded to the invitation to engage in a mentoring exchange of skills and knowledge.
  • In December 2010, Boxer Build (owned by Pick and Pay) in Ngcobo, in honouring their partnership commitment to Orchid10, provided desks. Since then, Pick andPay has committed to partner with Orchid10 (Keep the Dream) in ensuring the school structure is restored and suitable to the school’s needs.
  • Other partners include Africa Fashion International, Chevron, Pep Stores Limited and Engen who have and continue to generously contribute to the project.

A Long-Term Vision

As Orchid10, we see education as a key to unlock the potential of people to enable them to become part of a vibrant South Africa. Thus, this project is not just about a school, it is about a community and ultimately our country – and what is possible when the right people come together to make a difference.

 

Our aim is to not only build a school, but in the process to also equip and support the community with skills and knowledge to maintain it and also leverage it for the advancement of the community.

 

Our role is to engage with, bring together and involve a range of stakeholders role-players and investors to ensure that we create a new model of school that expands the role of the school in acommunity to that of a hub, a centre that supports community growth and enables those in the community to reach out to other communities far and wide.

Sigangeni Junior Secondary School

Sigangeni Junior Secondary School is a little rural school locatedin Cofimvaba district Eastern Cape. Local villagersbuilt the school with mud bricks in 1986 in response to acritical need to educate the children in the area. Over time,the school buildings have succumbed to the ravages of time, theweather and simple neglect.

 

In a visit to the school in 2010, it was apparent that the school is not suitable for teaching and/or learning. With the broken windows being a norm rather than an exception, and the state of disintegrating doors of all the classrooms, and in most cases students cramped in broken desks or sitting on the floors, it is no surprise that very often the students and teachers get sick; impacting on the ability of the school to function effectively.

 

Sigangeni is by no means unique in a South Africa where government is struggling to roll out basic infra-structure to fulfil the promises of basic education to all citizens wherever they are. As one teacher noted, "the teachers and parents are trying hard to boost the morale of learners and to take care of some of the basic needs, but it is not enough." The fact that the school hasone of the best choirs in the area and has often won competitions, shows some commitment from the school to use what ithas at its disposal to keep going.

 

This school is meant to provide an educational foundation toover 600 learners and is desperately in need of some intervention. As noted by the Principle, Mr Boto, "we invite the publicand private sector to work us and the community in ensuringthat this school is able to be a hub within the community thatdrives the growth of the village"

Orchid 10 Fundraiser on espresso, SABC 3


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