Helping under privileged children get a proper primary school education in South Africa

We support North Riding School in Johannesburg by paying costs that the parents cannot afford

The Vuleka school opened its doors in 1989, with 59 children and 4 teachers. It was established for the purpose of improving the education of black children, which at that time was of low quality. The objective was to teach them English, so that they would then be able to enter English-language schools that provide better education outcomes. This proved successful, and many parents expressed the wish for their children to attend the Vuleka school.

Vuleka now operates three kindergartens, three primary schools and a special education centre. The number of children attending has risen to 637, and there has also been a change in the scheme's underlying philosophy. "We became aware of the need for an inexpensive English-language school for underprivileged children", says Vuleka Fundraising Director Janet Saner. "Many public schools offer free education, but the tuition is not as good as in private schools. But most private schools are too expensive for the parents, so Vuleka is a good alternative."

With help from private donors, and by keeping its costs down, Vuleka is able to offer high-quality, inexpensive education to underprivileged children from less favoured districts. Due to the high quality of teaching many of the children reach a sufficiently high academic standard to be awarded a scholarship to one of the country's best high schools, where they can continue their education on a high academic level.

The Hempel Foundation supports North Riding School in Johannesburg, which has 193 pupils on the roll. Hempel pays costs that the parents cannot afford, so that the school does not need to seek other donors. Principal Helen de Kock says: "I know what a difference this makes for the school. It's such a relief to know that we now have the funds we need to teach our children. This means we can focus solely on the task of their education."