Category: Creative Learners | Early literacy and numeracy development | 14 August, 2013 - 18:00← BACK
The Family Literacy Project has partnered with Tembaletu, and the Aids Foundation of South Africa in the Community Works Programme to initiate an early-childhood development project in KwaZulu-Natal. This learning brief is focused on the implementation steps of their Khulisa Abantwana Home Visiting Programme, which is based on a two-year pilot focusing on development and play for 0-4 year old children.
This is a story of our project implementation.
We have trained 175 women from Impendle, Ubhuhlebezwe, and Ingwe Municipalities to visit families in their villages to share information about child development with parents/guardians, and to play with and read to children between 0-5 years of age. These so-called, “Home Visitors” are all functionally literate women who learn about children’s rights, the importance of play, creating safe environments for children to learn in, providing a nutritious diet, etc., all with a focus on supporting young children to learn and build early literacy skills. The women each visit six homes in their own village, where they interact with the primary caregivers and their children aged between 0-6 years of age.
The Home Visitors all participate in training workshops prior to starting their rounds. They meet in groups of 15 women for the initial two-days of the workshop, and thereafter meet once a month for a further nine months. The workshops are designed to introduce them to the reasons for home visiting, how to plan, conduct and record their visits, and how to use the home visiting kits. The course covers the development, care and safety of very young children, and focuses on early literacy and language building activities.
During the workshops we teach the Home Visitors how to use the Facilitator’s Guide, and how to complete the Participant’s Guide and planning book for each family visited. They watch a DVD that shows actual interactions between caregivers and young children in homes similar to those that are visited. Each Home Visitor also receives a home visiting kit, with toys, and brochures selected to encourage early learning and literacy.
We have learned a great deal about what works well and we are sharing our lessons and implementation procedures here. First, we have learned the importance of working with partners; second, the suitability of our approach and materials; third, how best to train local women with no work experience; fourth, the need to know about other services in the communities where the programme is being implemented; and finally, the importance of understanding the rich diversity of households that are visited by our team.
By adopting these implementation steps and learning from our failures and successes we hope that other organisations can improve their own program models and expand much needed assistance for early childhood development in rural South African communities.
55 Botha Road, Botha's Hill, KwaZulu-Natal South Africa
(031) 765 1875
Learn from the Family Literacy Project’s five implementation steps for training “Home Visitors” to conduct household childhood development sessions in rural South African communities. By adopting these implementation steps and learning from the project’s failures and successes, other organisations can improve their own program models and expand much needed assistance for early childhood development in rural South African communities.