The most recent statistics for South Africa’s Western Cape Province mimics those of the country at large, with access to ECD, and especially quality initiatives, skewed towards families with more resources and older children. The Western Cape is home to approximately 532 097 children under the age of five, with recent ECD audit data indicating that more than 40% have no access to ECD facilities.
These children (251 592) have no access to ECD facilities of any kind
These children (55 000) attend a home-based, unregistered facility
These children (208 579) attend a registered ECD facility
These children (16 926) attend out of centre programs
Vrygrond and Overcome Heights, located near Muizenberg in the Western Cape, are two of the most concentrated examples of the challenges that plague poverty-ridden communities in South Africa. At last count, Vrygrond was home to some 42 000 people, with approximately 5000 children in the 0 – 5 year old age category. This community was one of South Africa’s very first informal settlements, and bears the legacy of many decades of inequality.
True North’s involvement within Vrygrond began in 2007, initially as a research project to record the challenges faced by vulnerable communities, whilst also exploring the framework provided by local and national government, as well as the quantifying the existing capacity within the non-profit sector.