Kefentse's Happy Place

Kefentse lives in a semi-rural area in Mpumalanga Province, in a small four-room concrete house. His house is a part of a Reconstruction and Development Plan (RDP) community, and he lives with his two aunts and younger sister. Kefentse is 13 years old, and he is in grade 7.

Kefentse’s home is a 10-minute walk from his school. For most children in the area, after school lets out at 2:30pm there is nothing to keep them busy. The Primary School does not have equipment or facilities to cater for afterschool activities, and children are frequently left to their own devices.

Many children in Kefentse’s area live in single-parent households, either due to separated parents, a deceased parent or an absent father. In early 2010, Save the Children recognised the need to open a drop-in centre for children in the area, which now serves over 133 children. The only other drop-in centre in the larger area, supported by the South African Department for Social Development (DSD) is in the neighbouring town which is - a two-hour walk from Kefentse’s home.

Kefentse says “I have been coming to the Save the Children drop-in centre for many years. I started in 2011. Here, we learn everything. Lots of children were telling me that I have to come to this centre. That this centre is too great and I could learn lots of things. It’s my friends who told me to come. They were already coming here and they said I must join. When I first heard about it I thought I would feel happy here at the centre. When I first visited I saw the children playing lots of games here, so I joined. I come every day and my favourite part is all the activities. My favourite really is the traditional dancing, Sbahaxa.

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