Phakamisa, South Africa
Contact: Mrs Thokozani Poswa (Director)
Focus: Pre-school education and empowerment of care-givers
Phakamisa is a ministry of Pinetown Methodist Church. Its programme includes pre-school education training for 250 adults each year, ensuring that good education is available to over 10,000 children. 1,700 caregivers (often grannies or ‘gogos’) of 6,000 orphans receive support and skills training (vegetable growing, beadwork, cooking, parenting, literacy). The Tholuthando group provides confidential support for those with HIV and AIDS. This group celebrates life and promotes healthy lifestyle as well as giving counseling, life skills and peer support. Economic empowerment comes through business skills training for such enterprises as vegetable growing, beadwork and sewing. WDR works alongside Phakamisa in employing a ‘wandering teacher’ who delivers literacy and numeracy classes to children without access to education in townships.
Our relationship has grown even closer in recent years. A Methodist group visited in August 2016, Thokozani came to Ireland in May 2017, and a media & monitoring team visited Phakamisa in August 2017. More recently, a learning team of young adults from MCI spent time with Phakamisa in July 2018, exploring themes of leadership and justice.