In February, Jonathan Erskine, a South African returning home from 20 years in the UK, did a tour of the activities of Indlela both in the Durban North & Amaoti areas. What particularly struck him were the difficult conditions a group of ‘Gogos’ faced in preparing food at Amaoti 3 Combined School, as part of an Education Department Feeding Scheme. Operating out of a tiny ‘Wendy Hut’ the “Gogo’s” were cooking food for the 900 school children, most days arriving before 5am in order to have the food ready for the learners.
What followed was an incredible story of doors opening, companies assisting and people offering their time, ably lead by Jono persevering in his desire to see the ladies in a new kitchen. As a hurdle was faced, Jono and his team at IPC – Coal & Cement Distributors, went on their hands and knees and prayed and God answered with the right solution each time. The first major hurdle was that there was no space to build a new kitchen. The solution was to cut back the bank and build a retaining wall. This provided a second obstacle; funding. Again prayers were answered and together with Sivest, Varsity College and IPC-Coal; plans, supervision, cement and funds were made available to complete this incredible project. Grindrod Corporate supplied a specially designed container, which had been laid out as a kitchen, along with gas burners, electricity and even a kitchen sink. Amaoti 3 has not only received a new ‘Kitchen in a container’, but also a much needed parking area.
At the official Ribbon-cutting opening held at the school on Thursday 14th October 2010, the entire school, along with their choir sang of their gratitude, while the Headmistress, Mrs Maphumulo awarded each donor with a certificate of appreciation. Indlela has been working into the school with a Life Skills Programme, a Literacy Programme and School Painting projects for the past 5 years and in the words of Mrs Maphumulo, “Together we are making great progress”