Leratong (meaning Place of Love), a pre-school in the heart Alexandra Township, provides a safe haven and quality education for its pupils in a challenging environment. Alexandra is a vibrant but deprived area and one of the most densely populated places in South Africa.
Leratong is a lively, loving and nurturing place where it is hard to comprehend that many of the carefree children who attend the preschool go home to situations of real hardship. What further makes this refuge all the more important for these children is that it allows them to be who they are – small, innocent and playful. It helps them learn that despite what they are exposed to, there is still goodness in the world.
Peggy Chauke, a local councillor and a highly respected figure in the local community, is the school’s principal and has run the school since its formation. It has taken much determination and courage to get the school to where it is today, where 140 children are educated daily. Since Gumboots’ inception, it has played a major part in the development of Leratong by securing funds to pay teachers’ salaries, to improve school facilities and to provide food and provisions. The school is an integral part of the community, and pressure to take on more children each year is always growing.