The Tereo Project School is a faith-based, non-profit organisation, established in 1999 as a school for street children and children at risk in Somerset West (about 60 kms outside Cape Town), who for some social trauma event or circumstances, fell out of the formal education system or have never been part of it. Tereo offers children at risk the opportunity to learn in a place of safety.
Tereo Mission: To break the cycle of poverty caused by little or no education.
Build resilient young people who realize their own potential who work productively and fruitfully to contribute to their families and communities.
Give them an alternative to resorting to crime or prostitution which so many are forced to do so due to circumstances
Poverty touches every aspect of a child’s life. The child born into poverty almost always remains trapped there unless significant interventions occur. Left unaided, impoverished children face a lifetime of physical and psychological trauma—illiteracy, malnutrition, disease, low self-esteem and lack of opportunity. These are among the root causes of poverty that Tereo School overcomes.
Tereo School’s holistic programme is designed to transform the lives of impoverished children. Our school embeds strong character development ethics throughout our programme which are complemented by professional health care, nutritious meals, psychosocial counselling, family assistance and support and community outreach initiatives. We focus on the whole child and their support structures.
Our 3 Pillars of Success:
1. Innovative Education
2. Overcoming Adversity
3. Life Skills Development
Over the past 22 years we have been able to impact the lives of more than 1200 children.
Tereo is a special purpose school registered at the Western Cape Education Department and National Department of Education, with the added benefit of smaller classes (12-16 learners per class).
Most of the children are also out of synchronization between their current age and projected mainstream education age. i.e. they may be too old to enter mainstream schooling due to living on the streets, homeless, etc. Holistic intervention is therefore needed here to normalise these children’s lives.
All our funding comes from donations and sponsorships. While we ask parents to contribute to school fees, in most cases this does not or cannot materialize. We strive to ensure that no child in need is turned away therefore acquiring donors is therefore key!
This is an on-going project, with the provision of education through competent and qualified teachers being key to the success of Tereo Project School. Our focus is to be able to find and keep quality teachers who have experience with children from challenged backgrounds as well as employing the appropriate support staff. We typically have 85 registered pupils per year at out our school, 6 teachers, 2 learner support staff/teacher’s assistants, a Child Welfare Officer (to support and work within the children, parents, families and social workers to ensure the wellbeing of each child) and 6 support staff.
Funding is the single biggest challenged faced by Tereo Project.
Tereo Innovative Approach:
1.Our school covers Grades 1 – 5 (ages range from 6 – 15 years of Age)
2.Baseline assessment for each learner prior to placement in their respective grade
3.Small classes with individual attention
5.Teaching is customized to learner needs
6.Bridging Classes - to help learners adjust to formal schooling
7.Learner Support Programme - to develop learning areas that need attention
8.Regular in-house wellbeing assessments with our Child Welfare Officer (paid by Tereo) to identify where we can facilitate professional therapeutic interventions and monitoring the psychosocial well-being of every pupil.
10. Scholastic and psychological assessment to address learning and/or developmental issues.
11.Provide school homework assistance and reading skills to reinforce a Zero Drop-out for our pupils.
Our approach ensures:
Strong learners fast tracked into mainstream schools
Assessment identifies learners requiring skills or remedial schooling
This allows more time to focus on the learners who require help.
Individual learner strengths identified: E.g.: scholastic, artistic, computer and technology, etc.
Counselling Support for abused learners (psychological, physical and sexual abuse ) and neglect
Placement in care (where required). This is done in conjunction with Social Workers, Child Welfare and the South African child protection legislation.
Life Skills Development:
1. Life coaching is provided as most children are socially ill-adapted often due to their environment or traumatic events which they have been exposed to.
2. Community Outreach with our Child Welfare Officer to work with parents, caregivers, and learners to bring about home stability.
Given their home situations and lack of financial support, they are transported to and from school and to all events, otherwise they do not or cannot come to school.
All learners received 2 meals daily and a snack at break times. For most learners this is the only food they will have each day
Monthly food and school holiday food parcels are provided to the most needy families.
We provide school clothing, shoes, bags and stationery and sport clothing.