On Tuesday the 8th of December SANZAF Port Elizabeth hosted an Early Childhood Development Workshop at Southend Museum. The workshop was hosted with intentions of providing a platform aspiring ECD teachers to network and have access to prominent and experienced ECD practitioners. This will enable the ECD learners to secure entrepreneurship and employment prospects through the platform provided by this workshop. The workshop covered content such as work ethics for ECD teachers, Entrepreneurial skills and innovative teaching and learning techniques. The workshop was presented under strict Covid-19 prevention measures. This was the first session under a series of similar programs to be hosted by the South African National Zakah Fund office in Port Elizabeth.In attendance was private College ECD lecturer, Tanya Kirsten, representatives from the Department of Basic Education and the National Youth Development Agency.
Early Childhood Development (ECD) can be defined as programmes, activities and experiences aimed at promoting the overall health and education of young children with the active participation of their caregivers and parents. The World Bank goes as far as to declare that the positive impact made by early childhood learning and experiences has the greatest return on investment for a country as a whole.
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On 30 September 2019, SANZAF treated 120 of its elderly recipients from Port Elizabeth and Uitenhage, to a trip to Happyvalley beach front in Summerstrand. This was the third initiative from SANZAF`s Muharram program for recipients in celebration of the new Islamic year. Other initiatives include a skills development program for Madressah children and a youth empowerment camp. In this initiative SANZAF provided transport, breakfast, lunch and a cosmetic hamper worth R250 each for all the recipients. The program commenced at 9 o`clock and ended at 14h00. This program included a presentation from Diabetes South Africa. The recipients were taught how to prepare balanced and healthy diets as well as exercising techniques that keep the body strong enough to prevent Diabetes from escalating into vital organs. SANZAF annually offers opportunities like these to recipients to equip under resourced communities.
As the month of Muharram heralds the dawn of the new Islamic year, so too it is a special time for Muslims around the world. Just as it is associated with giving, taking stock of ourselves and where we are going spiritually it is also a time of joy and mercy. The month of Muharram is one of the four sacred months which is ushered in by fasting especially the first ten days, which are resplendent with spiritual reward. In line with the hadith by Tabarani and Al-Bayhaqi in which it reported that Nabee Muhammad (SAW) said: “One who generously spends on his family on the 10th of Muharram (day of Ashura), Allah will be generous on him for the entire year.” SANZAF reached out to our Madressahs in celebrating the significance of this special month by distributing 100 food packs to five of the Madressah’s supported by the PE office on 10 and 11 September 2019. Learners attending the Madressah`s had the opportunity of enjoying some fruit, party packs and received sufficient groceries for the rest of the month. The Madressah`s benefitting from this initiative are based in Marikana, Motherwell, Kwazakhele and New Brighton. This forms part of a number of initiatives implemented annually by the Port Elizabeth office of SANZAF in celebration of the new Islamic year.
On 16 February 2019 the Port Elizabeth SANZAF office in conjunction with Kwantu Game Reserve provided 60 children an opportunity to enjoy a Safari experience at one of South Africa`s finest wildlife reserves Kwantu Game Reserve. The children were invited from Madressahs located in different residential areas within the Nelson Mandela Metro supported by the Port Elizabeth office. Namely the Al-imaad Madressah in Kwazakhele, the Jamat Khana Madressah based in Newbrighton, one Madressah from Motherwell and the Marikana Resource Centre. Other children were from The Youth of Ubuntu and the Universal Islamic Cultural Trust Madressahs respectively.
The visit commenced at ten o`clock in the morning and finished at two o`clock in which the children were served with refreshments on arrival, were taken for a game drive to view and learn about wildlife, enjoy the 5 star hospitality experience and visit the animal sanctuary. In the course of their visit they received a three course meal and had an opportunity to interact and take pictures of the animals.
SANZAF and Kwantu Game Reserve hosted this initiative in appreciation of Madressah children who excel in their studies and have shown commitment to their work through attendance to the Madressahs everyday of the week. This visit is one various other initiatives the SANZAF office in Port Elizabeth hosts for Madressah children to encourage and celebrate their excellence and commitment to their studies.
As the festive season unfolds, dress codes and diets are bound to change in accordance with the celebrations that are always associated with the summer seasons. Unfortunately those who are less fortunate do not enjoy this privilege. The Sanzaf office in Port Elizabeth made a generous donation to the Tharros Child & Youth Care Centre on 14 December 2018. The Tharros Care Centre is a NPO dedicated to providing care and child development services to abandoned and destitute children between one and 12 years of age. This organisation is based in Hanky and has been providing a conducive environment for childhood development to underprivileged children for two years.
Theresa Sampson who is the founder of the Child Care Centre contact the Sanzaf office in Port Elizabeth for assistance towards clothing and food for the children residing in the Child Care Centre. On 14 December 2018 the Sanzaf office delivered clothes, bedding material and food parcels at the Care Centre. The items donated by Sanzaf will ensure that the Children who are living under the Care of the Tharros Centre are well fed and clothed while they remain in an environment that is conducive for childhood development.
This donation is part of various other initiatives the Sanzaf Office in Port Elizabeth conducts contributing towards the advancement of childhood development.
The Department of Social Development has published several reports which characterise the Eastern Cape as the second province with high rates of food insecurity in the Country. Various welfare organisations and NPO`s strive to provide assistance to communities which are affected by food insecurity to help overcome this situation.
For over thirty years the Sanzaf office in Port Elizabeth has been providing groceries to its recipients on a monthly basis in an effort to eradicate food insecurity. Recipients who benefit from this initiative are from low income households therefore they struggle to support themselves and their families with sufficient groceries that can sustain them for a month period. Predominantly pensioners and recipients with health challenges benefit from this initiative. On the 4th and 5th of December 2018 the Sanzaf office in Port Elizabeth distributed 45 food parcels to recipients residing Port Elizabeth.
The food hampers will assist the recipients and their families with adequate food supply for the rest of the festive season. The Sanzaf office in Port Elizabeth supports 105 recipients with food hampers in PE and Uitenhage. The areas where recipients who benefit from this initiative come include Arcadia, Missionvale, Bloemendal and Jacksonville.
Through support from current and prospective donors the Sanzaf office in PE aims to sustain this initiative to ensure that recipients from low income households receive adequate food supply.
Jalsah is a special occasion which is meant to appreciate the hard work and dedication Islamic children have displayed though out the year in terms of attendance and fulfilling the duties prescribed for them in their respective Madressahs. This event is hosted annually in celebration of the children`s commitment to their education.
On 25 November 2018 the Sanzaf in conjunction with the Marikana Islamic Resource Centre/Madressah hosted a Jalsah for all the children attending the Madressah. The Marikana Islamic Resource Centre is a Madressah based in Marikana Port Elisabeth it is one of the five Madressahs supported by the Sanzaf office in PE. The Madressah serves 40 children from Marikana and other neighbouring locations. Sanzaf distributed 40 new clothing items such as brand new shoes, kurtas, Jubbahs for girls and boys attending the Marikana Resource Centre.
Various research reports reveal that, the healthcare system of the Eastern Cape Province has been teetering on the edge of complete collapse for years. Horror stories abound of dysfunctional hospitals, run down clinics, over stretched nurses, medicine shortages and ambulances that never arrive. The healthcare system is not functioning in a way that is ordinarily understood as operational all at the expense of people’s rights, dignity and lives.
The most disadvantaged members of our communities are the ones who suffer the most from the above conditions. SANZAF initiated a Health & Wellness Day a few years ago and this has spurred a number of other similar initiates which SANZAF now partners or participates in , namely the Al Ansaar Health Clinic in Bell Road and the recent My Youth Community Project which invited SANZAF to bring a number of our beneficiaries to receive the free healthcare services which were rendered at this event. This initiative was held in conjunction with the provincial department of public health, Clicks Pharmacy, Smile – Hub dental surgery, Path care, Diabetes South Africa and various other local health care service providers to host the Public Medical Day. The health clinic at the Malabar community Centre from 09.00am until 01.pm. Medical practitioners from the Nelson Mandela Metro voluntarily provided their professional services to members of the community who struggle to access quality health care service. As a result of the overburdened health system and long delays at public health facilities a number of residents do not always have access to such health facilities.
The health practitioners involved in the Public Health Day rendered free medical checkups for various illnesses such as tests for sugar, blood, cholesterol, vision and hypertension. Other health services that were provided to the community members were advice on weight loss, pain management and free medicine. Medical professionals who took part in this initiative ranged from GP`s, Dentists, Psychologists, Physiotherapists, Podiatrists, Chiropractors and homeopaths.
Sanzaf invited 70 of its recipients to benefit from the various health care services provided at the Public Health Day event. The beneficiaries invited by Sanzaf to this initiative were all residents of the Nelson Mandela Metro’s Kwazakhele, Motherwell, New Brighton areas as well as some of the learners from the Universal Islamic Cultural Trust’s (UICT) Madressah.
Sanzaf through it’s collaboration with various organisation and It’s own initiatives ensures access to such Public Medical initiatives takes place annually, ensuring that residents from under resourced communities are not denied the basic right of access to quality health care.