When South African schools closed and SOS villages went into lockdown earlier this year, SOS families suddenly had loads of time together!
Children really missed their best friends, loved ones and teachers. Yet it was also a huge opportunity for SOS mothers and aunts to bond with the children.
“The eight hours that children normally spend at school was spent at home with us. We had more time to make children feel loved and secure. After we taught the little ones about Covid-19, they composed a song on their own about the virus. We had fun learning about each other – and the children loved their freedom and change of routine,” says Nokonwaba Jobi, an aunt at SOS Mthatha.
At SOS Rustenburg, the mood was more somber and uncertain in the beginning. Many children worried about getting sick and stayed indoors with their SOS mothers.
“The main source of entertainment was the TV, and in particular the educational channel. Children would sit together to learn and give each other support. And when they got tired, they’d hold a church service or play board games!” recalls a Rustenburg house mom.
Stringent Covid-19 prevention measures were implemented in all SOS villages to keep children and staff as safe as possible. Mothers had to cancel their annual leave to keep family units isolated, and children were not allowed to freely interact with other households in their village.
We also set up isolation rooms, learned and practised the correct way to wash hands; we distributed disinfectants, masks and gloves; and ensured each household had a good supply of immune-boosting medication. And that’s just the tip of the iceberg!
It was worth the effort though – and we thank our donors for providing children with safe environments to spend the lockdown. Thanks to you, SOS children had the freedom to run around, explore, dream, watch TV and just be children!
A Covid-19 emergency fund has been set up to supply households with essential COVID items. Your donation to this fund will be greatly appreciated.
Make an online donation today.