A Manenberg organisation has launched a public appeal to get a laptop and a printer for a local tutor.
Jane van Schalkwyk is a board member of Youth 4 Change Global run by Leslie van Rooyen.
Mr Van Rooyen said he was so impressed with Ms Van Schalkwyk’s work in the community that he wanted to help her and show her special recognition during Women’s Month.
Ms Van Schalkwyk moved to Manenberg four years ago to be close to her daughter. She is originally from Namibia and lived in Bloemfontein most of her adult life. After working as a legal secretary for 23 years, she struggled to find work in Cape Town but then a woman in her road asked if she could help her Grade 4 grandchild who could not read.
“I got involved with tutoring when my children were still at primary school. It started again when I was approached by the grandmother,” Ms Van Schalkwyk said.
“Within six months, the child was able to read, and then we started focusing on other subjects. I got the shock of my life when she passed last year with A and B symbols. She also received a certificate for the best progress made.”
Ms Van Schalkwyk lives in the same road as Mr Van Rooyen, and she got involved with his organisation. Apart from serving as a board member she is also a Youth 4 Change education officer.
Ms Van Schalkwyk also completed a Wordworks home-based school partnerships programme at Easter Peak Primary School. Wordworks, a non-profit organisation, celebrated her as one of their “early literacy champions” during Women’s Month last year.
Ms Van Schalkwyk now tutors 14 children for a nominal fee.
“We continued working during lockdown, and I am proud to say all my children excelled during the first term. Classes are huge at schools, and sometimes the teachers rush through the curriculum. I take my time with them and we will not move on until the child understands the work completely. I am very strict and don’t believe in spoon-feeding.”
Taryn Philander said her sons’ school work had improved a lot after Ms Van Schalkwyk had started tutoring them.
“My eldest son moved from an Afrikaans-medium school to an English medium, and he struggled to adjust. Jane, being fully bilingual, helped him with his languages. He made a huge improvement… She also assisted our younger son with his mathematics. She makes it fun for them.”
Allan Thompson, another parent, said Ms Van Schalkwyk did “incredible work”.
“She helps the children with more than just school work. She is almost like a social worker or another mother to them. She always gives us as parents feedback and my child has improved so much,” he said.
If you can assist, contact Mr Van Rooyen at 065 883 5091, Ms Van Schalkwyk at 064 404 8443 or email firstname.lastname@example.org