Computer centre for Alex’s Ratang Bana Future for Children

The Choma Dreams Café for young girls opens at Ratang Bana. Photo: Thabang Kuaho

 

Ratang Bana Future for Children, a non-profit organisation which offers support to girls between the ages of 14 and 24, has received a state-of-the-art computer centre.

The centre is a donation from the non-profit organisation HIVSA, the President’s Emergency Plan for Aids, the Charlize Theron Africa Outreach Project and the Dreams Innovation Challenge.

HIVSA representative Puseletso Phoofolo introduces Pontsho Mampa to the new centre and its equipment. Photo: Thabang Kuaho

The centre, dubbed the Choma Dreams Café, is fully equipped with six laptops, WiFi and solar panels making it both sustainable and eco-friendly.

“The Choma Dreams Cafés aim to act as plug-in points for skills development [and] provide support for HIV prevention and other health programmes,” HIVSA chief executive officer Jean Armstrong said.

Ratang Bana’s founder Ingrid Maredi said she was happy about the donation. “I am impressed. This will contribute greatly to the children’s schoolwork.” It will attract more young girls to Ratang Bana and take them off the streets, she said.

Read: Ratang Bana children have a party of their lives

Pontsho Mampa (19), who goes to East Bank High School and started going to the centre, said the café will help her get off the streets.

“My friends and I gamble a lot, so coming here I can see that I will stop gambling and do my school work,” Mampa said. She explained that she will use the café to do her assignments and prepare for exams.

Ratang Bana Future for Children Founder Ingrid Maredi cuts the ribbon to the newly donated Choma Dreams Café. Photo: Thabang Kuaho

“We plan to support around 12 000 adolescent girls and young women through Choma Dreams Cafés. We believe the cafés are the ideal way to reach vulnerable young women in underprivileged communities and to keep them actively engaged in HIV prevention programmes and ultimately remain HIV free,” Armstrong said.

Ratang Bana, which was founded in 2009, provides support to about 468 young girls through mentoring, grocery donations and tutoring.

The non-profit organisation survives through donations from other organisations and members of the community.

Details: Ingrid Maredi 076 356 2272.

How do you like the idea of a dreams cafe for the girls to chat about their dreams and aspirations? Tweet @AlexNewsZA to share your views

  AUTHOR
Thabang Kuaho
Journalist

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