Outliers: After school programs as a safe space for learning and growth

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Outliers: After school programs as a safe space for learning and growth

i know a lot of people in Cape Town who are involved in some exciting educational non-profit organisations doing a range of inspirational things with the young people in our province, particularly those in less resourced schools. One such group is Outliers and i asked them to share a little bit about what they are about:

In South Africa, only 50% of children who originally enroll in school make it to matric. In addition, an alarming number of our school-going children are functionally illiterate and innumerate. Whilst those who can afford it can go to good schools, the rest are left to make do with what is on offer in poor communities. These students require access to some special intervention to remediate learning to enable their success.

In 2010 we started an after-school program, offering free tutoring and help with homework, in a hall opposite the taxi rank in Mowbray, Cape Town. We did this because we believe that every young person has the right to the same quality of education in South Africa. In the absence of such equity, we want to ensure that marginalized children, whose prospects are crippled by lack of access to quality education, receive support through after-school programs. The impact of access to this space was evident in both the academic performance of students who attended, as well as in their self-esteem and growth in confidence. Many of these students have gone on to graduate university and start or join other after-school programs in their communities.

By 2014 we launched Outliers so that we could respond to the need for access to free, quality education by helping other people start and run after-school programs. The innovation of this approach is that rather than impose a model to bring about scale, we achieve scale by supporting those who already have a passion and a vision for the students in their communities.

Our goal for 2018 is to help 10000 students access free quality education in after-school programs. We currently support 115 after-school programs that impact more than 6000 students across the Greater Cape Town metropole. To do this, we train and mentor, we mobilize resources, and we connect civil society, like you the reader, for engagement in education.

Our vision is to see all young people positively contributing to society by making informed decisions that promote their own wellbeing and that of their communities, daring to dream about a different future for them and their families. We want to support them as they are the boundary-crossers and poets, musicians and artists, engineers and thinkers, who will renew our imagination for what could be rather than what is.

outliers annual network celebration

Outliers Annual Network Celebration

Should this align with your vision for our communities in South Africa, please consider partnering with us and help us grow our network to make free quality education happen for all students. To find out more or if you would like to investigate starting an after-school program in your area, drop Outliers an email at info@outliers.org.za or visit their website.

[For stories of another non-profit doing amazing work in Cape Town schools check out LifeMatters Foundation]

About the Author:

Brett Fish is a lover of life, God, tbV [the beautiful Valerie] and owns the world's most famous stuffed dolphin, No_bob (who doesn't bob). He believes that we are all responsible for making the world a significantly better place for everyone.

One Comment

  1. […] [For a story on another non-profit that is doing incredible work in Cape Town education, check out O… […]

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