Nelson Mandela International Day 2012 improves school through ‘Mandela Deed’
To take the lead and get the ball rolling for Nelson Mandela Day 2012, the Nelson Mandela Centre of Memory, the Mandela Day team and several high-profile artists participated in their own good Mandela Day action during the launch of Nelson Mandela Day 2012 on 23 May.
The event’s guests were also invited to join in the activity at Tlhatlogang Junior Secondary School, where everyone painted two container classrooms and created an environment for the students that is more conducive to learning.
“These two classes were added to the school after the pupils won a cash prize from a debate competition and the money was put towards building them, but we could never afford to paint them,” explains Mr More, the Principal of the school. “The school wins a lot of district competitions, mostly from the Debate team and Arts & Culture team. We have trophies and certificates on show for all these achievements.” The school also received a certificate of excellence in 2006.
Even though Tlhatlogang Junior Secondary School is in need of many facilities, such as more toilets, classrooms and a library, Mr More and the educators at the school don’t let these challenges get in their way and are constantly striving for success.
“I am very proud of how the teachers took it upon themselves to make sure that the children are well fed. Most of the students at the school are poor and come to school hungry, so the teachers started a feeding scheme in May 2011 and then later the government chipped in to help,” Mr More says. “There will always be challenges but we will always find a way to work around them. We are a team and carry each other.”
The feeding scheme feeds every single student at the school, of which there are 900.
By demonstrating to the public how a coat of paint can transform a classroom at the school, those who participated illustrated the meaning of Mandela Day. They proved how one small good deed can make a big difference and, in turn, inspire yet another. “I am very happy and proud of the fact that the Nelson Mandela Centre of Memory chose this school. It has made such a difference and I am hoping it will make others aware of our needs, as well as the needs of other schools in South Africa,” concludes Mr More.