Proud of my Town
Proud of my Town
Who is Ranyaka?
Ranyaka is a non-proﬁt organisation that provides sustainable, integrated solutions to the challenged facing town, neighbourhoods and communities in South Africa. Ranyaka Community Investment Managers are focusing on assisting Early Childhood Development (ECD) centres in the Paarl area such as ‘Proud of my Town’.
What is “Proud of my Town”?
ECD is a fundamental element of any integrated community development process. It encourages social cohesion as communities need to collaborate and collectively identify and access resources to address the challenges facing ECD in South Africa. This process not only contributes to the well-being of the next generation but equips them to become responsible, active citizens who are able to make a positive contribution to the development of our country.
The first five years of a child’s life are critical. During this phase, brain development dramatically influences the child’s future learning, behaviour, health and ultimately, his or her ability to become a well-functioning, fulfilled and productive member of society. This is why it is so critical that quality education and care are provided to young children in these first five years.
In Paarl and Stellenbosch, social enterprise Ranyaka Community Transformation is assisting 60 Early Childhood Development (ECD) centres. The objective is to help create safe and stimulating environments for the optimal development of the children in their care. The current focus areas of the programme include safety in the crèche environment, training of ECD staff and the provision of quality nutrition. Ultimately, the goal is to assist crèches to move closer towards registration with the relevant authorities.
Ranyaka’s work in this vital space is made possible by funding from Nedbank’s Proud of my Town initiative. Early Childhood Development is one of ten programmes that forms part of Ranyaka’s Collaborative Community Development model – a model which was developed in response to the need for holistic and sustainable socio-economic transformation in towns and neighbourhoods across South Africa. This model today drives Nedbank’s Proud of my Town programme in a growing number of nodes countrywide.
A critical step in the development of this ECD intervention was the mapping of the identified ECD centres. In preparation for project kick-off, a survey was completed to verify:
- The location of crèches
- The ownership and governance status of crèches
- The registration status of crèches
- The condition of the physical structures
- The number of children per crèche
- Availability of play areas
- Nutrition levels
- Proposed location of ECD centres
As a deliverable, all of the above information needs to be combined into maps, narrative text, and images which can then be made available to stakeholders located nationally.
As a registered non-profit organisation, Ranyaka Community Transformation works with donor funding. The main priority is therefore to apply such funding to the benefit of the affected community. This means that Ranyaka does not have access to high-level GIS infrastructure such as servers, web services, software and programmers.
Through local knowledge, ArcGIS 10.5.1 desktop and the base maps from ArcGIS Online, Ranyaka was able to map the location of ECD centres and connect the associated information as obtained during the survey in an attributed table linked to a point feature. To make provision for web accessibility, the Esri Story Map template (Shortlist Story Map) was used to compile information and design a compelling story regarding the status quo of the ECD centres. ArcGIS Online was also used to identify the market area of a proposed ECD centre via the use of the drive and walk time functionality that is available. The aim was to identify the number of ECD centres that are located within close proximity (1 km) to a proposed toy library.
Esri Story map has allowed users from within the ranks of the main sponsor (Nedbank), as well as its implementing agent (Ranyaka) to, via the web, obtain easy access to spatial and other relevant data that assists in the ongoing roll-out of the ECD intervention. The exercise also facilitated a discussion regarding the type of assistance, as well as the funding that was required within the demarcated areas. In the near future, the Esri Story maps will also be used in other areas within which Ranyaka is rolling out the Proud of my Town initiative.
- – The mapping of the identiﬁed ECDs that are combined into maps, narrative text, and images, and made available to stakeholders located nationally.
- – Esri Story Map
- – Esri Story Maps enabled representatives of the main sponsor to easily access spatial data and other relevant data via the web.
“The science is conclusive, investments in early childhood development yield lifetime development returns for the child, his or her family and society. Notably, early childhood development (ECD) has the potential to contribute significantly to the reduction of key development challenges facing South Africa, particularly poverty and inequality.”
National Integrated Early Childhood Development Policy (NIECDP), 2015