Mandela Day 2019

"Education is the most powerful weapon which you can use to change the world."

Nelson Mandela

Make a tangible impact on Early Childhood Development

We had such support at this year’s Mandela Day Maker Space. The aim was to create calming corners for preschool classrooms where children can go to help them self-regulate.

We can ensure that children are well supported and thus maximise the benefits of their early learning. These foundations will take them through their school careers and into the job market later in life. These are the critical years of brain development and have a huge impact on their social, emotional and cognitive development.

WHAT are you supporting?

Learning in Reach is currently training 30 preschools to be trauma-informed schools.

Trauma has a profound effect on the developing brain of young children. It’s well documented that trauma at an early age can lead to instances of mental illness and social disease. Current research indicates that trauma actually affects the structure and function of the brain. Poverty, mental illness, and drug and alcohol abuse all have a hand in creating an environment that replicates itself over and over in each successive generation.

We know that brain development between 0 and 6 years old is crucial for a child’s future success, so we need to ensure children are supported and provided with positive experiences.


Learning in Reach recognises the power that early childhood centres can play in impacting children’s lives, both in academic success and in their family and community lives. We need to create safe and supportive preschools that are equipped to understand the nature of trauma and how it affects learning and development. This is a shift from the one-size-fits-all education system.

(source: Optimus National Prevalence Study)

WHY should you help?

An estimated 42% of South Africa’s children have experienced some form of maltreatment and 82% have either experienced or witnessed some form of victimisation.

War is commonly defined by the UN and other such institutions as an act of conflict that has claimed more than 1000 lives. In the Western Cape, 1875 people were murdered in the past six months alone. This means that many of our most vulnerable residents in the province are living in a war zone.

Learning in Reach works in the marginalised, gang-ridden Cape Flats community to empower an ecosystem of quality education for the holistic development of the child.

Learning in Reach is improving access to quality early childhood development by supporting and nurturing parents and teachers as role models and educators of young children through disruptive pedagogy, training, infrastructure and resource improvements, nutritional support and economic empowerment.
Early intervention is required to break the intergenerational cycle of violence and abuse.