Developing, supporting and mentoring ECD Centres and teachers during implementation of holistic programmes.


Through a process of consultation with all stakeholders (community leaders, Early Learning Centre staff and parents), ECD Centres are identified to receive regular mentorship plus post-training mentorship is supplied. Mentorship includes assistance with strategic planning, education, regular in-service training, monitoring and coaching; resource assessment and development; management and administration; and the planning and implementation of an ECD Programme at these centres. Masikhule currently offers this service to more than 30 centres situated in the local townships and on farms within the Helderberg region of the Western Cape.

From experience we have found that merely offering training, no matter how practical, does not guarantee a carry-over of this knowledge into the classroom situation. Regular visits and spending time with the teachers at their ECD Centres is vital to ensure the sustainability and ultimate growth of these centres.

At the end of the mentorship period, we envisage Early Learning Centres that:

•     are registered, well-resourced, well-managed and well equipped;
•     have qualified and dedicated staff
•     have a varied and holistic Early Childhood Development Programme in place; and
•     provide children with nutritious meals in an environment that is safe and conducive to learning and holistic development.

We rely on donations to continue with our vital mentoring programme. Please consider sponsoring an ECD Centre (or more) for their mentorship visits by taking out a monthly debit order. Two visits per month, including petrol, admin and reporting costs R1 000,00.


Masikhule seeks to improve Early Childhood Development in marginalised communities.


In 2015, Masikhule developed an initiative to screen/assess 4 to 5 and 5 to 6 years olds at Masikhule-mentored ECD centres on an annual basis. The main objectives were to assess the children’s general development (physical, fine and gross motor, perceptual, school readiness, early literacy and numeracy, etc) and with this information, to report to the teachers and principals on the findings; to inform parents on how they can encourage developmental skills and for Masikhule to adapt and improve its training, mentorship and in-service training program according to these results. The purpose being to ensure these disadvantaged children enter formal schooling being more school-ready in all vital areas of development.

From these initial findings, Masikhule has developed and is implementing a project to offer Teaching Enrichment Workshops throughout the year for pre-school teachers and principals to highlight the challenges the children are facing (based on the assessment results); how they can be assessed in the class; why these skills are important for learning and how teaching can be adapted and enhanced to minimise these problem areas.

Nine Teaching Enrichment Workshops (TEWs) are presented annually to senior teachers, addressing developmental delays  identified during this screening. These TEWs include teaching resources, and educational material is made accessible through the Teachers’ Early Learning Resource Library.

Young children from marginalised communities, including informal settlements, attending ECD centres are at risk of not reaching their physical, mental, social and learning potential due to a number of factors. The most important being the dire physical and socio-economic environment in which they live, poor nutrition and attending crèches that are mostly under-staffed, unregistered, under-resourced, over-crowded and staffed by untrained women. Over the past 13 years, Masikhule has put measures in place to address these concerns, and the new Teacher Enrichment Workshops should further enhance their impact on ECD, empowerment and employment in the marginalised areas surrounding the Helderberg. For more information please contact


Masikhule makes a positive contribution to the upliftment of communities through skills training, mentorship and capacity building in the field of Early Childhood Development.

The name Masikhule means
‘Let us Grow’ in isiXhosa.

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