Thursday 7 November 2019
If you responded with warmth and generosity to our recent request for support for our Sireletsa Bana project, thank you!
As a project that specifically targets issues such as malnutrition – a tragic danger for many children living in poverty – Sireletsa Bana is a lifeline to little girls and boys in the Capricorn District of Limpopo, as well as the Thabo Mofutsanyane District of the Free State. The harsh reality is that the growth of many children is stunted, literally, because they don’t get enough – or the right foods – to eat.
For those of us fortunate enough to have a fridge full of food, it’s hard to imagine a child having to go to school hungry, without breakfast or a lunch box packed with healthy snacks. Yet, hunger is a sad way of life for millions of our country’s people: more specifically, for 6.8 million South Africans, according to Statistics South Africa (Stats SA).
According to Stats SA, more than half a million households with children aged five years or younger experienced hunger in 2017. This is especially alarming, as optimal nutrition is vital during the earliest years: it’s when most brain development occurs.
This is one of the reasons for food security being amongst Save the Children South Africa’s top priorities. Without good nutrition in the first five years of life, a child’s development is seriously compromised.
In addition to helping young children, Sireletsa Bana also touches the lives of teachers, caregivers and parents with life- changing educational information. For instance, many of the underprivileged parents, caregivers and community members that the project reaches are surprised to learn that babies and toddlers need attention and play in order to develop optimally.
Simply increasing the amount of interaction with babies, without costly aids and toys, is a first important step to improving the holistic development of many young children in impoverished settings.
“HISTORY WILL JUDGE US FOR THE EVERYDAY DIFFERENCES WE MAKE IN THE LIVES OF CHILDREN.” - NELSON MANDELA
Save the Children believes every child deserves a future. In South Africa and around the world, we give children a healthy start in life, the opportunity to learn and protection from harm. We do whatever it takes for children – every day and in times of crisis – transforming their lives and the future we share.
Note to the Editor:
If children are affected, we’ve got something to say. Our team of experts are available for comments, interviews and information.