Big Hearts Bathroom Project started earlier this year, when we read about a child that drowned in a ‘long-drop’ toilet at school.
Walking into the girls’ bathroom at the school I teach at, I saw a lot of broken toilet seats and bully messages on the wall. My heart sank to the floor thinking of what it must be like to walk into that every day. No child deserves to die in a toilet.
Together with friends and family we jumped right in to getting donations for paint, toilet seats, sanitary pads, curtains, mirrors, towels and air fresheners. Volunteers took an entire Saturday to complete a bathroom. We put inspirational messages on the doors to brighten their days so that the bathroom is a safe space.
This past Saturday we did it again, this time we did two bathrooms in one day!
Without the big hearts of these people, this project would not be possible. They offered their time and energy painting and fixing the entire day.
We started at Regents Park Primary School and the aim was to complete one bathroom at each school in the surrounding area. We would like to then challenge parents and teachers to complete their bathrooms, paying it forward by doing one bathroom for another school in need.
I would really like to thank the following people for being involved by volunteering and donating to our project: Melissa Strydom, Anthony Coates, Kim Mynhardt, Dudley Wellen, Elwet Wellen, Samatha Prinsloo, Lesley Ellis, Devon Daniell, Skylar van der Berg, Denise van der Berg, Stacey van der Berg, Elan Wellen, Jaco Pretorius, Chloe Wellen, Marno du Preez, Marius Jansen van Rensburg, Amore Pretorius, Mahnaaz Bhaila, Alex Mokoatle, Elsie Mphalele, Carine Laubscher, Danie Laubscher, Megan Laubscher, Janine Strydom and TK Schofield.
If anyone would like to get involved, we would love for them to join us in making a difference in these children’s lives, they are more than welcome.
(Grade Six and Seven Afrikaans FAL teacher and counsellor at Regents Park Primary School)