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Tuesday, June 28, 2022

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LOOK: Cape Town ECD being built with sustainable material

Published May 25, 2022


Cape Town - An early childhood development (ECD) centre in Delft is nearing completion in its groundbreaking sustainable material development.

Ulwazi Educare in Delft, Cape Town, has been seven months in development and is being built to accommodate 170 pre-schoolers.

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Builder and co-founder of Natural Building Collective Peter McIntosh said it took him and his team patience to conduct this project.

The building of the ECD centre is being constructed using tyres, rammed earth, eco-bricks and natural plasters.

Eco-bricks are well 2-litre plastic bottles filled with cleaned plastics that cannot be recycled.

This helps in keeping water sources and landfills clear from these types of pollution.

The aim of this project is not only to provide a service to the community, but to also showcase a new form of sustainable development that is earth-friendly.

“We are using recycled materials. Thousands of thousands of eco-bricks are being used, 1 700 large car tyres. The windows and doors are recycled. Poles are industrial waste. The inside and outside walls are cobbed. The focus of this project is sustainable building, and I believe the first 1 000 days of a child is of utmost importance.

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“This building is about providing a support and foundation for children in their upbringing,” McIntosh told IOL.

He said as a nation, with regards to sustainable building, we are 50 years behind and believes this type of building should have been done ages ago.

The building is much more cost effective than a ‘normal’ project.

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James Fernie from Uthando South Africa, a non-profit organisation, has partnered with McIntosh and his team on this project.

“We were introduced to Peter through another organisation - Ikamva Labantu.

“We already had fundraising underway for a school project in Khayelitsha, and we were struck by his philosophy, ethos and need to look for an alternative way of doing things that are earth friendly.

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“I believe we must not stop striving to live on earth in a sustainable way,” Fernie told IOL.

He has expressed an overwhelming amount of gratitude to donors for trusting and believing in this project.

The team has received donations from across the globe, and one of its biggest donors is the Mitialto foundation from Belgium.

The ECD centre is expected to have its grand opening in July.

“On the day of our opening, we will be announcing our next campaign, which is set to be a R7 million school in Heideveld, which will be visible from the N2.

“One mustn't assume we are just slapping up anything. This is a good quality building.

“We are going to use this building to show what is possible,” Fernie said.

Anyone wanting to get on board with ideas, wanting to donate towards this and future projects, are welcome to contact James Fernie at [email protected]

[email protected]