It was a flurry of activity as the young men of Grades 10 and 11 involved in Durban High School’s Community Engagement class deftly wielded knives to produce a small mountain of peanut butter sandwiches. Each morning, during their daily Elective Period, pupils engage in various activities ranging from sport, language studies to robotics, amongst others. The Community Engagement elective provides the students an opportunity to learn the importance of community-building and how to make a worthwhile contribution as part of their social responsibility.
Several years ago, Drama and Art teacher, Giselle Joshua, who is in charge of any community service-related aspects at the school, made contact with The Domino Foundation, the Durban North-based NPO which impacts some 13,500 beneficiaries each day. She directs this elective, having initiated an ongoing relationship with the foundation’s Nutrition Programme which provides a daily meal to over 7,000 children in ECD (Early Childhood Development) centres, primary and secondary schools in several Ethekwini communities.
The DHS young men have exercised their culinary skills several times since then and Giselle’s plan is that this will become a monthly activity at the school. Those involved in the bread-and-butter activity source all the components of the sandwiches needed and have a planning session before the actual day of manufacture so that all their commitments are met. One of the sandwich-makers, Grade 11 pupil, Saharsh Rambaran, commented, “I think all of us are aware that every sandwich we make will make a difference to a fellow pupil at a school we may never visit.”
He went on to challenge other schools in the Berea/Musgrave and Glenwood areas to join in DHS’ effort to meet the nutritional needs of children who might otherwise have nothing to eat during their school day.
For further information on how schools are able to use their community service hours to benefit the vulnerable members of Durban’s communities, interested people may contact Domino’s Volunteer Co-ordinator, Esther Madikane on 031 563 9605 or firstname.lastname@example.org.
Caption: DHS pupils on the school’s Community Engagement elective busy making sandwiches for The Domino Foundation’s Nutrition programme (left to right: Wyatt Rose; Avela Gwala; Hariv Pillay: Tarao Naidu; Keshan Pillay).