GRAAFF-REINET NEWS - Narsingstraat Primary School opened its doors in Asherville, Graaff-Reinet, on 1 January 1988.
The school came into being after Karolus Koeberg, a member of Parliament at the time, saw the need for a primary school with an adjoining hostel to cater for children from the neighbouring farming and other communities.
Narsingstraat as a school has achieved many accolades, with famous names such as current rugby Springbok Elton Jantjies, as well as U.19 national players Dekado Jantjies and Ricardo Grootboom, being alumni.
There are also currently a number of leadership and social development programmes such as Living Legends, Early Inspiration and Suncep being implemented at the school. Unfortunately, the condition of Narsingstraat's hostel does not reflect the efforts made at the school itself.
As a public school, it relies heavily on funding from the government, which in turn does not have any funds available for the upkeep of the hostel. The hostel was built to house 200 learners but currently can only accommodate 150 learners due to lack of infrastructure.
This leaves many children from the surrounding areas with no place to stay if they want to attend the school.
The facilities were in such a state that the mattresses are old and most were full of holes, and there are no desks available and the children are forced to do homework and study on their beds,
Montego Pet Nutrition took on this project towards the end of 2018 after management heard about the conditions at the hostel from one of the employees whose child attends the school. Already the company has renovated six bedrooms by fixing roofs, windows and cupboards, as well as providing new mattresses, linen and bedding.
The aim of the project is to preserve what can be preserved, and improve on the rest. The hostel should create a safe and homely environment where the children feel secure, and so the main concern at this stage is the health and safety of the learners.
Once these issues have been addressed the project will focus on entertainment for the children and the aesthetic value of the hostel and the surrounding area. A project like this does not only require materials but also time, expertise and funding. There are various ways to become involved, and input from the community would be greatly appreciated.
Montego's Social Responsibility Manager, Karlien de Wet, started with the company towards the end of last year and has already become passionately involved with this project.
For more information or offers of help, contact Karlien on 082 925 2309 or firstname.lastname@example.org.
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