Masithethi - Let's Talk
The community of Zithulele is characterised by many unique strengths. One of these is the range of local organisations we have the opportunity to work alongside. Axium works next door to several organisations who address various aspects of community development in health, education and skills development.
1) Zithulele Hospital is a government hospital that provides quality basic health care.
2) Jabulani Rural Health Foundation supports Zithulele Hospital as well as focuses on ECD opportunities, community development and environmental issues.
3) Philani Mentor Mothers supports expectant mothers and ensures infants receive the nutrition and stimulation that prepare them for pre-school.
4) Grace Vision Rural Eyecare Program provides free, quality eye care to communities who cannot afford it.
5) Sihamba Sonke invests in local mentors and leaders through youth development and youth employment.
6) Zithulele Research covers various healthcare related research projects that are being conducted in Zithulele and its surrounding areas.
7) Zithulele Independent School a dual medium (English and IsiXhosa) school which currently teaches children from grade R-4.
8) And us...! Axium Education which focuses on education in rural communities by working with students, community members and educators to raise student achievement.
Earlier this term, a meeting was held between the NGOs of Zithulele and the traditional leaders of the Zithulele community, Chief Gcinuvuyo and his council members. The purpose of the meeting was to share information about the work of NGOs in the area as well as to nurture relationships and communication between the various parties. Given our context, it is crucial that we have the support and collaboration of local leadership.
In certain parts of South Africa, there is a dual system of governance. Traditional leadership institutions must negotiate relationships and work together with government at local, provincial and national level. This plays out in communities across the rural landscape of South Africa.
Through story-telling, presentations, videos and photographs, each NGO had the opportunity to provide information about what their organisation does, as well as share positive stories of people whose lives have been impacted. Chief Gcinuvuyo and his Council then provided constructive feedback as well as encouragement for the work being done.
The traditional leaders and NGOs of the area share a commitment to Zithulele’s future. All parties in the meeting emphasised that development and transformation are long term endeavors and agreed that these and other shared challenges can only be navigated through intentional partnerships.Everyone agreed that going forward, a shared goal is to enhance and prioritise the relationship between the NGOs and traditional leadership.