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 in Vrygrond began as a fact finding effort in 2007,intended to record the challenges faced by vulnerable communities, whilst also exploring the framework provided by local and national government and quantifying the existing capacity within the non-profit sector.
Little did we know that Vrygrond was destined to become the focal point of of our work, as the findings related to Early Childhood Development in this community inextricably drew us into a fully fledged, long term mission to serve the children who live and are educated there, and apply our learning to the greater field of ECD within developing countries.