Wednesday, May 20, 2009

Visiting a school in Albert Street

Today my music partner Erika Strydom and I visited  Albert Street School in central Johannesburg. We were there to perform our children’s show “Stories from the Alphabet Tree”, based on our CD “The African Alphabet”

The school is housed in a dilapidated old Methodist church building and the headmaster told me they have around 500 students. Most of the kids are Zimbabwean refugees, many are here without parents.

Three classes are taught at the same time in the gallery of the church. This means that the teachers have to shout to be heard.

The place is old,overcrowded, yet spotlessly clean.

 The few papers lying around were being cleaned up by a young girl (out of view)

"Miss Beanie" (My sister in law is doing her teaching prac there)

The teachers all work here on a voluntary basis. Most are highly educated Zimbabwean refugees themselves.

One of the teachers (and me)

Erika tells the story of "The crocodile & the dung beetle"

Food is supplied by the Salvation army.

Most of the kids live in the Methodist church around the corner, along with over 2000 adults

They have been largely ignored by the South African government.

The kids are delightful, beautiful, inquisitive, intelligent, loving…


They deserve better than this.


Some links:

More of my photos of the school



1 comment:

  1. I'm afraid few of us realise how many people are refugees from one African country lining in another one. Over here (in Finland) people complain about "so many" refugees coming to Finland, when it's really a microscopic percentage of what's going on in the world.

    My Dad and his parents came to Finland as refugees...

    Also interesting was that the teachers work there on a voluntary basis.
    What they do is very very important, and so is your performance for these children.

    Thanks for sharing this school experience with us!