The youth of South Africa will be the future decision makers of the country. Therefore it is vital to ensure early childhood development is supported properly. For the children of South Africa to properly develop, ECD should be an essential in both formal and informal settlements throughout the country. Currently, 69% of children between the ages of 0-4 are exposed to ECD in the Western Cape, whether at home or in a centre. However, only a third of these children are exposed to centre-based learning in this area, leaving newly two-thirds of children without structured ECD prior to enrollment in grade R (General Household Survey, 2011). As stated in the General Household survey conducted to determine the level of development of the country, the “government has made significant efforts to increase access to early childhood development provisioning by introducing a reception programme as well as expanding the provisioning of services to children from birth to four years.” It is clear that the government is making strides to improve support of ECD with plenty more room to grow.

After performing and analyzing our research done in the seven week prep-term before our arrival in Cape Town, we have developed four themes that encompass all of our knowledge obtained in regards to ECD, as we believed we would solely be working at Kiddies College Preschool. These themes are Challenges of Early Childhood Development, Models of Early Childhood Development, Resources for South African Crèches,and South African Government Regulations and Policies for Registration of Early Childhood Development Centres. Each theme discusses a different aspect of the broad topic of ECD that correlates with our project. The Challenges theme delves into the explanation of the challenges children face living in day-to-day South Africa, which shows the necessity of ECD in the average child’s life. The Models theme looks at the different types of ECD environments that occur in both formal and informal settlements. The Challenges andModels themes have helped educate our group on the ways of education in South Africa and any limitations present. These themes have also educated us on the basics of centre-based and non-centre based ECD in South Africa. Through these themes, our group has concluded that centre-based models of education are generally located in formal communities with a structured curriculum to better prepare children for Grade R, which is the equivalent to kindergarten.  Non-centre based models are located in informal settlements and focus on family-community support and interactions as a form of learning. The Resources theme discusses the different kinds of support a crèche can receive, as well as ways of obtaining this support. This specifically looks at the difference between government support for a registered ECD centre versus non-governmental organization (NGO) support for unregistered centres. The last theme, Government, looks at the government perspective on childcare in South Africa. For instance, the requirements to start a crèche and general policies of government registration are discussed. This theme covers aspects of what is expected in a facility, which is helpful for our group to be able to determine what a good facility entails and how subpar facilities can be improved. The Resources andGovernment themes address government topics, which provide specific knowledge we can apply to both Kiddies College and Langrug. Altogether, these four themes help create a more comprehensive understanding of what early childhood development means in South Africa. A visual was created to bring together all of this knowledge of ECD which can be found here. We have utilized our knowledge in order to help Kiddies College Preschool and Langrug as efficiently as we can. All of this knowledge and research can be used to help future CTPC projects by providing broad information on ECD from a social and economic standpoint.