The CMC Networks Community Upliftment Project


CMC Networks Community Upliftment

August 2022

Who said Mandela Day is only for one day a year? CMC Networks takes Mandela Day further… “What counts in life is not the mere fact we have lived. It is the difference we have made to the lives of others that will determine the significance of the life we lead” ~Nelson Mandela

Takane Academy is a registered NPO education facility for the local children of the Kya Sands community, northwest of Fourways, Gauteng. This school is run by the incredible headmistress Caroline Ngwenya and Directors Samantha Libongani & Jaqueline Thakga.  

The care and nurturing the founders of the school give the children and the community is completely selfless altruism. Headmistress Caroline gave her own home for Takane many years ago.  A neighbour invited Caroline over for some tea where she shared that she has heard of all the good Takane Academy was doing in the community. Touched by the selflessness of Caroline and the evident need the school meets within the community, their neighbour generously gave her property to the Takane Academy to assist with this incredible initiative. 

The community is heavily reliant on the school to assist the children with the basic education and care they need. Not only are the children cared for within school hours, but also while they are back at home. Each child is assigned a guardian angel who personally ensures the children are safe and have access to a nutritious meal. These guardian angels are called the “Gogo’s” - the grandparents or the elderly in the community. They do house calls and check in on their assigned children regularly.

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When the children’s parents do not come home on a Friday they go to their assigned Gogo for the weekend. The school receives sell-by-date food donations from a local SPAR which are distributed not only within the school, but also throughout the community. For most children, this is their only meal of the day.

The school is a fee-paying school. By fees, they mean whatever the parents can contribute to daily meals, basic educational material and staff wages. Some parents can only afford R50 a month and with 120 students (Grade R – Grade 10) that’s a stretch! Some parents do voluntary work at the school, which is an amazing addition to the help that’s needed.

CMC reached out to our staff and shared the touching story Takane Academy had to tell. For the Mandela Month 2022 initiative, our staff had the opportunity to propose a charity where we could add value.

Takane epitomises what CMC Networks as a company stands for and this was an amazing bonding experience. Takane stands for “Teaching under the tree”, and symbolises the development of young people. This aligned to what CMC Networks strives to achieve with our Learnerships, Internships and Leadership Development programs aligned to our mission statement “Our vision. Your future.”

Leadership Development Team of 2022 was asked to investigate and recommend how we could support Takane Academy. The team went to the school and heard the stories they had to tell.

What stood out for us was that Takane would be eligible for government funding if they were able to meet the minimum regulations. For example, all the bathrooms had to be renovated, doors had to be accessible from the outside and partitions needed to be installed within the bathrooms for privacy. The Grade R’s also needed to have their own playground which adhered to the safety regulations.

The team was able to secure funding from CMC Networks, from our employees, as well as donations from external companies.  As a result, we were able to renovate all four bathrooms, adding partitions and new toilets, creating a safe environment for the children.  We also received donations from JH Handyman & Africa Sports Turf United who donated their labour as well as artificial grass.

Our staff donated food parcels, contributed to the purchase of beanies and scarves and was also able to make a sizable contribution towards Takane’s municipal bills. We bought hot dogs, painted a wall and helped with the veggie garden. We also ran a craft station for the kids, where we sat together and made all exciting works of art. We built a fence around the Grade R play area and painted it in the school colours -we share the same brand colours, what a match! We finished the day off adding our handprints to the wall to celebrate our time together.

We intend to continue to assess where we can help and support Takane to create the future for their children.

Click Here to see our Takane Video




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