ASLA Foundation Project

The ASLA Foundation joined forces with the Perdekraal East Windfarm to celebrate Mandela Day supporting activities at the Welgemoed Primary School. The approximately 65 year old school is located 30km outside of Ceres in an area known as Warm Bokkeveld, and the children who attend the school are from the six surrounding, privately owned farms.

28 learners are enrolled at Welgemoed Primary and these are equally distributed across two multigrade classes – a Foundation stage class, catering for Grades 1 – 3, and an intermediate grade class that caters for Grade 4-6. When the learners go to Grade 7, they usually attend the Ceres Primary School, before going off to High School.

On Mandela Day enthusiastic representatives from Perdekraal East Windfarm and the ASLA Foundation wielded their paint brushes to transform the insides of the classrooms. The wooden floors also required a facelift, and varnish was donated to the school, for the floors to be painted on a day where there was less footfall through the area!

The school also received sports equipment (soccer posts and balls, as well as a mini table tennis board and netball balls) which was gratefully received by pupils and Principal Morné Syster, who has taught at the school since 2006 and was appointed Principal in 2008.

Principal Syster, is the learning environment more conducive now?

“Yes definitely. The subsidy we receive from the Department is based on the learner total, and because of our low learner enrolment, the monetary fund from the department is like a drop in the ocean. So we depend on external organisations and companies, that make a huge difference.

“Usually we paint the exterior of the roof every two years but this was the first time in a very long time. It contributed to more positive and safer learner environment and the kids loved their new classes. It also contributed towards better discipline, and even improved learner performance.”

Is the sports equipment being utilised?

“The kids are using the soccer posts and balls, usually during interval but even after school now, especially since we have teaching assistants, as part of the government youth employment creation programme that was started by government during COVID in 2020.”

Are there any other needs that could be addressed to assist in terms of infrastructure?

“This is a very old, small school and when it was originally built a concertina door was put between the two classrooms, which means that each classroom will hear what the other teacher is teaching. Perhaps in the future, if a company could help with a dry wall, or something that offers more soundproofing, it could help.”