WOW! What a rollercoaster year 2021 has been so far. COVID -19 has definitely thrown some challenges our way, but it is clear that our staff and children have a positive mindset and that we are continuing to strive through it.
We had to make some changes to how we run Sinethemba to ensure that we follow the Covid regulations for Special Care Centers. Whilst it was very difficult for the children and parents, the staff also had challenges with not seeing the children on a daily basis. Each person involved, however has done their best to achieve the children’s individual goals. The fact that 5 children from Sinethemba have moved onto new schools are evident of that. We are so proud of Hayden, Tinotenda, Charlie, Iviwe and Dean.
We currently need to have a staggered approach with each child attending Sinethemba every two weeks. This has been done to limit the number of people on the premises and to maintain social distancing to the best of our ability.
Masks are required to be worn when you are at Sinethemba. We have a strict screening process whereby temperatures and symptoms are checked before entering the vehicles and Sinethemba. All information is documented and filed. Should someone fall ill during the course of the day, we have an isolation room and strict protocol is followed to arrange for the person to go home while limiting contact with others.
Our two cleaners work extremely hard to maintain our high standards of santizing and cleanliness on the premises. They are required to clean bathrooms every hour and classrooms every 2 hours while following a strict schedule. The carers are constantly sanitizing equipment and monitoring the children’s needs in regards to keeping them healthy and safe.
We have had to close on two separate occasions due to a person testing positive and having been in contact with others at the Centre. We acted on the side of precaution in these cases due to our children being high risk. Although no one else who was in contact with the individuals tested positive, we felt that it was better to play it safe and close for the quarantine period.
We are very grateful to CSPID and the Department of Social Development who continued to support us during this pandemic by assisting us with sanitizing products and PPE to help keep us safe. We would like to thank Department of Health for assisting us in getting the staff vaccinated in May. We would also like to thank our numerous funders for the donations that are assisting us during this time.
We are looking forward to the day when we can return to the normal schedule and have everyone back full time. But until then, we will continue to do our best and take everything in our stride.
From all of us at Sinethemba, we hope you and your families continue to stay safe.