• Early childhood development is the key focus area to tackle literacy challenges
  • VWSA employees volunteer to join the cause
Centurion – Volkswagen Group South Africa (VWSA) closed off Mandela month at the Edutak Pre-primary Training Centre in Pretoria last weekend.

More than a 120 Volkswagen employees and their loved ones volunteered to create a conducive training and learning environment for early childhood development educators. They were joined by Edutak staff and early learning development practitioners.

Established in 1989, Edutak is an Education, Training and Development Practices (ETDP) SETA accredited non-profit organisation which provides NQF (National Qualifications Framework) level four and five training to early childhood development practitioners.

The organisation focuses on disadvantaged communities, especially in rural areas in Gauteng, Mpumalanga, Limpopo and North West. Since inception Edutak has trained close to 3 500 practitioners and provided workshops in occupational health and safety, labour law, nutrition, classroom lay-out, lesson planning, firefighting and dealing with differently abled children. Edutak is also one of the beneficiaries of a Volkswagen Polo Vivo which the organisation uses to reach other ECD centres to provide training.

“Early childhood development plays a pivotal role in shaping the foundation of a child's future. By empowering early childhood development educators with knowledge and skills necessary to support early literacy and language skills in the classrooms, we believe that our young children will reap the benefits,” said Nonkqubela Maliza, VWSA Corporate Affairs and Government Director.

Maliza added that investing in early childhood development can yield significant long-term benefits for society, as it fosters a generation of healthier, more productive individuals who are better equipped to contribute positively to their communities.

The VWSA employee volunteerism programme called, Show of Hands, provide an opportunity for employees and their loved ones to physically participate in the company’s Corporate Social Investment initiatives. Employees revamped the external play areas and renovated the training and resource centre. They also installed a new toy library and unpacked donated learning resources like games, books and toys.

This was VWSA’s second leg of its Mandela Month volunteer programme. The first event was held in Gqeberha (Port Elizabeth) about 30 kilometres from the manufacturing plant based in Kariega (Uitenhage). With the National Sales Organistion (NSO), Group Parts and Accessories division and the Dealer Training Academy based in Gauteng, this project gave the Gauteng based employees the opportunity to put up their hands for a good cause.