Tembaletu

Brief description and main aims
The Vision of Tembaletu is to enable children with physical disabilities to participate in learning opportunities by providing an inclusive environment for learning, play and socialising.
Main Activities
All learners take part of either a mainstream or skills based education system and ages range from between 4 to 20 years. The school is government funded with private donors as well as the NGO sector involvement.

The school provides the learners an opportunity to learn as well as to develop the skills needed to function in society. Support is offered by a therapy team (psychologist, nurse, physiotherapists, occupational therapists and a speech therapist) as well as educators and volunteers. We try to offer educational opportunities that meet the learners individual needs as well as other activities such as crafts, computers, sport and cultural experiences.
We have approximately 60 learners who use wheel chairs as well as others who may need other devices to assist with walking. We also have a very active Augmentative and Alternative Communication program for our learners who are not able to speak.
We have a hostel on the school grounds which provides housing for approximately 40 learners during the week.

Volunteer tasks
Volunteers are offered the opportunity to work in a number of small projects/programs within the school and are through this given an opportunity to work with and serve the children of Tembaletu who all have physical disabilities and many come from very poor socio- economic backgrounds.

Library: While we have a beautiful library at Tembaletu with many books, it is currently non-funtional as there is no sustainable program to facilitate the use of the library and the issuing of books. Volunteers would support staff members in the implementation of such a program.

Sports: While we are unable to offer sport after school hours (with the exception of
wheelchair basketball, body building and soccer which are offered to our learners from other institutions), we do have weekly sport sessions during school time. Much help is needed with the coaching of various sports, motivating learners and with the help of assisting some of the sports disciplines, including an arts and crafts group (these learners are unable to participate in sports for various reasons and therfore they do arts and crafts).

Computer training: We have a fully equipped computer lab but no computer teacher. Help is needed assisting learners in the computer room. Other learners use computers full time to access their school work and some help or facilitation is needed. (They make use of high tech assistive technology, training can be provided for volunteers.

Facilitators/classroom assistants: We have no classroom assistants or individual facilitators for high needs learners. We have on average 1 teacher per 6-27 learners. Some learners need help with reading, writing and learning in the classroom and the teachers often do not have enough time to do as much one on one assistance as needed. Volunteers would be allocated to a class or learner to support them in their learning activities.

Administration and support: Help is needed with filing, administration, inventory and other tasks. Those volunteers interested in this field could assist school management with such activities.

Volunteer requirements / Skills
No specific requirements, any volunteers who are open to working with learners with physical disabilities and who feel comfortable working in a township school environment. No specific skills are required, we can match tasks according to the volunteers skills and experiences. A background in technology, disability, therapy/rehabilitation, medical or educational would be helpful but not essential. Volunteers must be over the age of 18.
Location
The energetic community of Gugs, better known as Gugulethu, lies virtually on top of Cape Town’s International airport, about 15 kilometres outside of Cape Town – one of the oldest black townships in South Africa and arguably one of the fastest developing. Gugulethu has been described as a combination of vibrant life and poverty with its roots in the migrant labour system of the Apartheid era, when the number of migrant workers from the Transkei became too great for the township of Langa to contain.

The name is a contraction of igugu lethu, which is Xhosa for our pride. Gugulethu, along with Nyanga, was established in the 1960s due to the overcrowding of Langa, which was the only black residential area for Cape Town at the time. During the Apartheid era black South Africans were not permitted to live in the city of Cape Town, and many people were removed from areas such as District Six to Gugulethu, Nyanga and Langa. The predominant language in Gugulethu is Xhosa. Originally called Nyanga West in 1958, people were allocated rooms in hostels designed in zones, where up to three men had to share a tiny room, and poverty and overcrowding were a characteristic.

Hosting Situation (Board & Lodging)
Host family.
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