Acknowledgement from Melanie Prinsloo, head of the school

” I don’t know how to express in words the impact that Naledi Projects had on our community since 2011 and will continue to have in the future. In 2010 we had 42 pre-schoolers, 20 afterschoolers and 10 slow learners in school.
The pre-school building was falling apart, the floor was all broken up, the ceilings were rotting, bricks were missing from the walls and the doors were broken. There were no security doors, burglar bars, or alarm system. There were no bookcases or cupboards to pack things into.
The staff were volunteering and were paid no stipends/salaries.
The children were transported by an old VW Kombi that was more broken than fixed.

At the end of the 3 year period we had 80 pre-schoolers, 30 afterschoolers and 80 schoolchildren. The pre-school building were renovated and furnished completely. A brand new building was built for the school kids. Ablutions for the toddlers were built. A new kitchen was built.  Staff was employed including a social worker for the community.

The impact on the community is phenomenal:
From an educational perspective –
1.    The children of the community will not be far behind anymore by the time they are supposed to start school due to the pre-school program. Our pre-school program is working beautifully.

2.    The primary school children were able to received education in English from Grades 1-3 whereas in the township school it would have been in Zulu. In the township schools in Grade 4 the kids switch to 6 subjects in English. Up to 20% of children in township schools fail Grade 4 because they cannot read or write English. The failure rate at Ubuhle School is almost non-existent.

3.    The children at our project are flourishing and they are so happy

4.    We started with a group of afterschool learners where most of them are failing. Now most of them are passing.

5.    Our community is education on HIV/AIDS due to the home training done by the social worker over the past 3 years.

6.    Most everyone in the community now has an Identity book and birth certificate for their children. They receive grants from the Government for the children and their quality of life has been improved.

7.    Unemployment declined due to the fact that we now employ more than 30 staff members, 15 ladies in the community are making and selling craft products.

8.    The children are transported safely to school in a brand new 40 seater bus.

9.    Many of the community volunteers who are now employed are studying to be Pre-school teachers and Primary school teachers.

10.    The community has turned from despair and depression to a place of joy and hope.

11.    The 3-year support from Naledi Projects and Luxembourg Government provided a sound foundation for us to build on in the future.

Melanie Prinsloo”

The Ubuhle Care and Development Centre (UCDC) in Vlakfontein, Bronkhorstspruit, Metsweding area, Gauteng province, South Africa


UCDC offers 200 black families living in the rural area on white farmer’s property, social care, a kindergarden, an english primary school up to level 3, after-school care, healthy meals, workshops and courses for adults, as well as some aid to develop new income sources. UCDC was founded in 2008 by local women and men (black and white), who are all working on a voluntary basis, even though most black employees do not have any other income.

>> The initiative comes from the base.


Naledi Projects helps UCDC to renovate and extend the current buildings (provided to use for free), to pay for the running costs for salaries, material and food for during 3 years and to establish new income sources. This provides UCDC with the chance to become self-sufficient and carry on its work on without the help from abroad and take care of 500 families.

>>Naledi Projects provides with aid to self-help.




At first sight the project might resemble a combination of a “Maison de Relais” with an adult education centre as we know them in Luxembourg. Is this really necessary? It would not, if the situation of the children would be a different one. The reality is described in the following randomly chosen accounts, that are examples of situations that children and families taken care of by UCDC are living in. These accounts explain the life of these children without the support of UCDC, how UCDC helps them in practice and how the life of these children and their perspectives for the future have been improved.

>> UCDC is the children’s harbour breaking the vicious circle of poverty.


The project helps in the first place the children. What is the additional benefit?

UCDC creates 23 jobs and trains adults. Metsweding is located close to the main cities, Pretoria and Witbank, and only 20km away from Bronkhorstspruit Town where some jobs are located for people from the rural area with some education. Thanks to UCDC, some adults already found new jobs; so UCDC is the stepping stone for the uneducated population living in rural areas.
UCDC brings social help to the rural area and provides the people with the chance to live there and work in town. The alternative would be the escape to the overcrowded townships which are in catastrophical conditions.

UCDC builds links between people of different ethnical and social origins. The wealthier people from the community come and visit the centre and work there on a voluntary basis. They meet the employees and the children and once they get to know each other, the social and ethnic walls disappear.

>>Development cooperation in South Africa contributes to remove barriers of the past, the fear, the lack of knowledge and helps to reduce social gaps.

Some numbers and practical information:

The families are living in a perimeter of ca. 20 km. The elder children got bicycles in order to travel between UCDC and their homes over the fields. The younger children and those living further away are picked-up by UCDC with a minivan.

The total project costs are EUR 216.788,85 in the first year, including the renovation and extension of the buildings, EUR 96.687,41 in the second year and EUR 92.559,48 in the third year. Naledi Projects has handed in the project to the Ministry for Cooperation asking for a cofinancing who accepted in August 2011. Naledi Projects needs EUR 67.672,62 for own contribution.


The project

Project locationBeneficiary: social aid to 500 black families living in the rural area on white farmer’s property, a preschool for 40 children, an English primary school up to level 3 for 80 children, after-school care for 100 children, healthy meals for all; courses, workshops and income generation help for all parents, as well as building up of a craft- and catering business for up to 10 workers.

Aim of the project: After the project, UCDC is sustainably reinforced. Renovation and extension of buildings, financing a part of the running costs for salaries, materials and food for 3 years and by that, giving UCDC the possibility to create income sources.

Duration of the project: 3 years

Local project partner: Ubuhle Care and Development Centre (UCDC) –

Costs of the project: 406.035,74 €

  • contribution from Naledi Projects: 67.672,62 €
  • contribution from UCDC: 67.672,62 €
  • cofinancing from the MAE: 270.690,49 €
You want to support UCDC

Download the form to sponsor a project in PDF or MS Word format and post it back to Naledi Projects.


Naledi Projects
Jean-Marc Turping, Tel. + 352 / 621 28 87 93

Course of the project:

  • In January, the school year 2013 started. The primary school of Ubuhle now has the classes 1, 2, 3 and a special class 4 – 7 for slow learners.

  • November 2012: Grade R graduation, sponsored by local companies.

  • November 2012: Library visit.

  • 4×4 Club treated our kids
  • Afterschool leadership
  • Afterschoolers

  • Courage
  • September, 24 2012 : Ubuhle Care and Development celebrates the South African Heritage Day. Enjoy.
  • Newsletter 16 (Juli 2012)
  • Newsletter 15 (May 2012)
  • Our follow up journey in March 2012. Enjoy reading!
  • March 2012: The support from Luxembourg motivated a lot of local sponsors to invest in UCDC:
    – The local company BMI planted grass in a part of the schoolyard in order to make it usable during the rainperiods.
    – Transporting 56 kids every day through dust roads was simply too much for the minibus and he had one breakdown after the other. Kuw from germany, a sponsoring action in USA, the support of the local company 4PL an a very smart start-up idea did allow UCDC to buy a new schoolbus and to make out of the driver an independant entrepreneur.
  • Automn harvest: the garden is coming along nicely.
  • March 13 2012: official opening of the new school building, that – thanks to your donations – could be financed by Naledi Projects and the Luxembourg Ministry for Foreign Affaires – Direction for Cooperation.
    Melanie Prinsloo, Thoko Ntuli, Claudine Klein, Dany Lamesch und Cynthia Wald cut the ribbon. Claudine Klein gives a symbolic fundraising T-shirt to the new chairman of UCDC Thys Louwrens telling him “In 2010 in Luxembourg, we did collect a lot of money for these kids – now it´s your go!”
  • Newsletter 14 (february 2012)
  • 30 January 2012: As with all projects, unforeseen things happen like termites or unforeseen works. The MFA agreed to spending some of the money saved on other activities and from the budget for unforeseen costs to cover the costs. More pictures from the school.
  • 22 January 2012: Paving started, dining hall and the new class rooms.
  • 18 January 2012: First day of school.


  • 16 January 2012: Preparing the start of the school year.
  • 15 January 2012: Renovation of the old buildings.
  • Newsletter 13 (december 2011)
  • December 2011: The ceilings are in and being painted. Lights are installed and working.
  • A truckload of sand from the farm was delivered to the school to fill in the square in front of the school. The afterschooler are helping with that since they finished at school already. The afterschool are also helping with the fetching and carrying for the builders to speed things up. The foundation for the water tank has also been built.