Malibongwe Primary School
When driving passed the forest plantation of Driefontein, 39 km away from the town of Ermelo, there is a beautiful valley where Malibongwe Primary School stands. Mailibongwe has 14 classes with 715 children and 19 teachers.
Until the PlayPump® was installed, all water was provided via a water tanker supplied by the Mkohndo Municipality that would travel from Ermelo. They could be without water for a week due to weather conditions, tanker breakdowns or road conditions. The PlayPump is a much appreciated chance of life for all at Malibongwe Primary School.
“I am able to drink clean water at my school now. Because I am staying closer to the school I come and play here before I go home and I really enjoy myself” Bhuka Mkhize aged 8, grade 3.
Most of the children live in the nearby villages and have to walk about 11 km each day in order to attend school. About 20% of the children are orphans and they are being looked after by their OVC (Orphan and Vulnerable Children) representatives who do home visits. The PlayPump® and school life are two of the only things that give these children a sense of fun and hope.
“I like the PlayPump because it is fun and I wait for my friends after school while playing on it. This PlayPump is so amazing” said Nomusa Mgomezulu aged 11, grade 5.
The community here is disadvantaged and most parents are unemployed. There is a local coalmine in the village which employs only literate people. Those who are illiterate work at the forestry plantation, earning between R650 and R750 per month. So having fresh water at the school improves these children’s lives and aspirations for their future.
“We are so pleased with the PlayPump, the children are always having fun, and most importantly, the number of children enrolled has risen from 603 to 715 because of the PlayPump. The children come into the school playground at the weekend to play on the PlayPump because they enjoy it so much while pumping water for us to drink” said the enthusiastic principal Mr. George Shabalala, aged 40.
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