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Stories from the Field

This Preschool and Nursery in South Africa Provides Children With Nutritious Meals and Education

By Hannah Payne on September 14, 2023

As Rise Against Hunger celebrates our 25th anniversary, we’re sharing stories of real impact — like in South Africa where Rise Against Hunger Africa supports young children’s access to education and nutrition through their Early Childhood Development Connect (ECD Connect) program. Rise Against Hunger Africa provides donated meals to early childhood development centers in South Africa. This helps not only ensure access to nutritious meals for the children ages 0 to 6 attending the centers, but it also creates cost savings for the centers that can then be used toward improving their infrastructure to meet the Department of Basic Education standards, which in turn strengthens academic resources for the children. 

Rhelokemelenge Preschool & Nursery is a Level 1 early childhood development center supported by the ECD Connect program in Meyerton, South Africa. By providing Rise Against Hunger meals at school and using the cost savings to improve educational resources, Rhelokemelenge Preschool & Nursery has grown and is now able to support the nutrition and education of 30 children! 

Watch the full video here to hear from those impacted by the program or click one of the images below to learn more about how Rhelokemelenge Preschool & Nursery is seeing positive change through the ECD Connect program. 

Maria, Director of Rhelokemelenge Preschool & Nursery

As the director of Rhelokemelenge Preschool & Nursery, Maria is committed to supporting the physical, mental and emotional development of young children in Meyerton. The meals Maria receives from Rise Against Hunger Africa have enabled her to nourish the children at the ECD and support their education, which then paves the way for their bright futures. She explains, “When [the children] go to school, they have a better dream because ECD is the foundation first where a child starts before going to school.”  


Joyce Mbeie, parent of Rhelokemelenge Preschool & Nursery student

Joyce’s son, who has special needs, attends Rhelokemelenge Preschool & Nursery. Prior to enrolling her son at Rhelokemelenge Preschool & Nursery, Joyce struggled to find a place for him. Now, she is pleased with the care he has received through the center’s meals and educational resources. “When I came here, they just accepted my child, and when I looked at him, I saw a lot of improvement with him,” she said. 

Joyce and her children

The positive changes seen at Rhelokemelenge Preschool & Nursery are truly amazing, and there’s even more impact seen through Rise Against Hunger Africa’s ECD Connect program! Learn more about the program’s impact for ECDs and children in South Africa here

September is Hunger Action Month — will you take action and help support bright futures and nourish lives in South Africa and around the world? Please consider a $25 monthly donation in honor of Rise Against Hunger’s 25th anniversary.