A story from a @sagefoundation volunteer from South Africa.


  1. 30 Sage Foundation volunteers in South Africa visited Iphuteng Primary School in Alexandra Township, Johannesburg. The day was all about improving literacy and reading through play.

    It was a very special day for one volunteer; it was Sage colleague, Poppy Mokgolobotho’s, old school.

    Adult illiteracy in South Africa is modestly estimated at around 15% and more than 50% of children drop out of school before Grade 12.

    Sage worked with the school to run a literacy programme and support a group of 400 parents to develop the skills they need to help their children with homework.
  2. Hello. I am Poppy - this is my @sagefoundation story.

    The thought of going back to the school I attended excited me. I never got thechance to go back before.
    At school I had my own challenges to overcome. I had to do my English home-work by myself.

    I overcame the challenge by being attentive in class and made sure that I did my home-work while I am still at school, before I went home. I would then do my maths at home because my mom was able to help me.
  3. Sage Foundation & Word4Word Literacy program
  4. Education is the key to a better future, the key to break the cycle of poverty.

    It is important that we support children in their education so that the world can be a better place. It is important that we support them, our presence will give them hope and motivation.
  5. We learned how to promote the culture of reading – through fun.

    We got to know the importance of literacy and how we can help parents so that they can help their children with reading and homework, increasing their confidence.

    The Word4Word programme is a great way to support parents. I think about how my mum would have loved it. She always wanted to help me with my English school work.

    By empowering parents with the skills to play and read with their kids, it will build strong relationships.

    As my mom always said: “it is not just the teacher who must make sure that the kids perform”. When parents are working hand-in-hand with a teacher, it makes it easy to see when a child struggles and work together to give the best support.
  6. This is where I started,I never thought I’d be where I am today

    I remember vividly how I used to be the child who would write the thank-you letters when there were functions at school. I remember how I would be reminded to put on full school uniform when there were visitors coming. There was a point where I could not stop my tears from rolling anymore,seeing the children reading their thank-you letters. That was me.
    I walked out of that school knowing that something will change. When I walk in again, something will be different – children and their parents won’t have to go through what my mum and I went through, they now have a way to change things.
  7. Use your volunteer days for good, touch lives and make a difference.